Promontorium Laplace

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Promontorium Laplace

Lat: 46.81°N, Long: 25.54°W, Diam: 50 km, Depth: 2.6 km, Rükl 10

Promontorium Laplace imaged with a 152mm achromatic refractor with 2X Barlow. The big crater to the north is Bianchini


LPOD Photo Gallery Lunar Orbiter Images Apollo Images

  • Although not mentioned in the LPI's search-list, it (Promontorium Laplace) is also visible on the last frames of Apollo 15's REV 35 (oblique north-looking metric/mapping Fairchild-camera photographs). Promontorium Laplace is noticeable as a mountainous elevation located at the curved horizon (north, or "to the right of" craters Helicon and Le Verrier).
  • In the above mentioned REV 35, frame AS15-M-1552 shows Promontorium Laplace immediately "behind" crater Helicon. It's interesting to explore the curved horizon in the ASU's zoom-able scan of AS15-M-1552 (to investigate a close-up of Promontorium Laplace "behind" Helicon).
  • Item N°24 in C.A.Wood's list of Concentric Craters (1978) is the not-so recognizeable one located west-southwest of Laplace E (north of Montes Recti). This Concentric Crater was captured on Lunar Orbiter 4's photograph LOIV-134-h3 (near the lower left corner of that frame, north of the western end of Montes Recti).

Research Apollo 15 and Lunar Orbiter 4 photographs: Danny Caes


(LAC zone 24B1) LAC map Geologic map



(IAU Directions) THE LAPLACE PROMONTORY.--A magnificent headland marking the extreme eastern extremity of the finest bay on the moon's visible surface, the Sinus Iridum; above which it towers to a height of 9,000 feet or more, projecting considerably in front of the line of massive cliffs which define the border of the Sinus, and presenting a long straight face to the S.W. Near its summit are two large but shallow depressions, the more westerly having a very bright interior. At a lower level, almost directly below the last, is a third depression. All three are easy objects under a low sun. The best view of the promontory and its surroundings is obtained when the W. side of the bay is on the morning terminator. Its prominent shadow is traceable for many days after sunrise.


Promontorium Laplace

Additional Information

  • IAU page: Promontorium Laplace
  • Depth data from Kurt Fisher database
    • Viscardy, 1985: 2.6 km
    • Cherrington, 1969: 3.01 km
  • Promontorium Laplace was measured at a height of 2.6 km by the Brandon Valley High School astronomy class as reported in Selenology vol. 24, no. 3 (Autumn 2005), pp. 20-21.- fatastronomer
  • Possible concentric crater west-southwest of Laplace E, north of Montes Recti.
  • Curious "boat" shaped formation northeast of Promontorium Laplace (between Promontorium Laplace and Montes Recti). See LPOD A Boat upon the Sea (discovered by Maurice Collins).
  • On December the 14th of 2013, Chang'e-3 (and its Yutu lunar rover) landed near craterlet Laplace FA, south of Montes Recti and the (quite easy-to-observe) crater Laplace F. See LPOD December 15th 2013.


  • Named for Pierre Simon Laplace (1749-1827), a French mathematician and astronomer.
  • According to Whitaker (p. 94), Lichtenberg assigned the name Heraclides falsus (a reference to what is now called Promontorium Heraclides) to this feature whose position had been measured by Tobias Mayer.
  • Beer and Mädler changed the name to Cap Laplace or Laplace (for example, Section 254, p. 269).
  • Later observers followed their suggestion, and this feature became Catalog number 1305 in Mary Blagg's Collated List.
  • It entered the original IAU nomenclature of Named Lunar Formations as Laplace (Prom.).
  • The name was Latinized to Promontorium Laplace in the 1960's.
  • Lacus Laplace (an unofficial name from D.Caes for the "flat" region about halfway between Promontorium Laplace and Maupertuis).
  • Laplace F's shallow crater (west of the bowl-shaped crater Laplace F). Not really a name, but... it's better than nothing... - DannyCaes Oct 28, 2015
  • Laplace hillocks (a nickname from D.Caes for the officially unnamed cluster of hillocks west of Promontorium Laplace, near the northern part of the Montes Jura) (this cluster doesn't seem to have received Greek letter designations during the making of the SLC-charts) (System of Lunar Craters, 1966).
  • Mons Laplace (an unofficial name from D.Caes for the large hill east of Promontorium Laplace) (about halfway between Promontorium Laplace and Montes Recti) (there's no Greek letter for it on the charts of the SLC...).

LROC Articles

Mounds in a Melt Pond

LPOD Articles

An Oblique View of Prom. Laplace


Hill, Harold. 1991. A Portfolio of Lunar Drawings, pages 88, 89.

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