Aristarchus Plateau

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Aristarchus Plateau

(informal name)

Lat: 26.4°N, Long: 50.4°W, Diameter: 230 km, Height: km, Rukl: 18

external image normal_Aristarchus%20AS15-M-2611.jpg


Left: Apollo 15 AS15-M-2611. Right: Close-up of the Cobra Head which lies within the Aristarchus Plateau in this WAC No. M111918011CE view from LRO.


LPOD Photo Gallery Lunar Orbiter Images Apollo Images


(LAC zone 39D1) LAC map Geologic map LM map LRO LOLA Topo Map (See 4.02.2010)


The rectangular slightly domed area cut through by Schröter's Valley.

Additional Information


  • Clementine views (left image annotated) using LTVT as a projection method.
  • Image above shows the possible location of Wood's Spot shown in rectangle (top = North, East = left). According to Wood's descriptions in his 1910 paper (p. 71) entitled "The Moon in Ultra-Violet Light, and Spectro-Selenography" "The deposit is shaped like a figure 3", and in his 1912 paper (p. 79) entilted "Selective Absoption of Light on the Moon's Surface and Lunar Petrography", "It may be an ash containing sulphur or it may be a deposit of sulphur formed by condensation of ejected vapour. It seems probable, however, that it is due to sulphur". From these papers the "figure 3" comment, undoubtedly, is the key as to what Wood was describing (annotated as a 3 in the left-most image), however, as Patrick Moore says in his book "A Survey of the Moon" (p. 121), "He never followed up the work with more elaborate apparatus, but the existance of 'Wood's Spot' as it came to be called, was confirmed in 1926 by F. E, Wright at the Lick Observatory." - JohnMoore2
  • One doesn't need high color-sensitivity to observe the curious green and violet near Aristarchus. Gruithuisen seems to have been the first one who observed the typical green of the quadrangular spot west/northwest of Aristarchus, of which he compared the colors (yellowish-greens) with those of terrestrial woods, meadows, and cornfields. Even the not experienced observer could catch this yellowish-green region in the wink of the eye. -Translated from the Dutch book Op Ontdekking in het Maanland by A.J.M.Wanders, 1949.- DannyCaes Aug 14, 2010


  • Named after Aristarchus, the most prominent feature on the Plateau.
  • Also known as Wood's Spot, after R.W. Wood who discovered in 1910 that the plateau was dark in the ultraviolet, giving it a yellowish color. Observed through common telescopes it (Wood's Spot) looks kind of mustard-colored (a mixture of grey and mustard-green or light khaki-green).- DannyCaes Aug 9, 2010

LROC Articles

Aristarchu Plateau (1): Amazing Geologic Diversity.
Aristarchu Plateau (2): Pyroclastic Deposit.
Rille within a rille.

LPOD Articles

Equal Rims? Colorful Aristarchus Plateau Aristarchian Colors Aperture

Lunar 100

L22: Mysterious uplifted region mantled with pyroclastics.