T. Mayer

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T. Mayer

(current IAU name; original IAU name: Tobias Mayer)

Lat: 15.6°N, Long: 29.1°W, Diam: 33 km, Depth: 2.92 km, Rükl: 19

external image normal_T-Mayer_LO-IV-133H_LTVT.JPG
The crater on the lower right is 16 km Tobias Mayer A. Note the hillock Tobias Mayer Sigma immediately northwest of Tobias Mayer itself (source: SLC E3) (System of Lunar Craters, 1966).


LPOD Photo Gallery Lunar Orbiter Images Apollo Images (no orbital Apollo photographs for T. Mayer? One should look for Tobias Mayer instead).


(LAC zone 58A1) LAC map Geologic map


Description: Elger

(IAU Directions) TOBIAS MAYER.--Like Gay-Lussac, a noteworthy ring-plain associated with the Carpathian Mountains. It is 22 miles in diameter, and has a wall which rises on the E. to a height of nearly 10,000 feet above the floor; on the latter there is a conspicuous central mountain, and on the W. side a crater, and some little hills. Schmidt shows a smaller crater on the E. side, which I have not seen. Adjoining the formation on the E. is a ring- plain of about one-fourth its area, which is a bright object. Tobias Mayer and the neighbouring Carpathians form an especially beautiful telescopic picture at sunrise.

Description: Wikipedia

T. Mayer

Additional Information

  • Depth data from Kurt Fisher database
    • Arthur, 1974: 2.92 km
    • Westfall, 2000: 2.92 km
    • Viscardy, 1985: 1.6 km
    • Cherrington, 1969: 1.58 km
  • The shadow-casting part of the east rim in LO-IV-133H is 2400-3100 m above the floor. Judging from the shadows, the depth of T. Mayer A is 1850-2300 m.
  • T. Mayer and its satellite craters A and C are on the ALPO list of bright ray craters
  • During local sunrise (morning terminator), the entire rim of T. Mayer A is illuminated by the sun, creating some sort of remarkable "ring"-effect. A curious clair-obscur phenomenon! - DannyCaes Dec 10, 2007


  • Named for Johann Tobias Mayer (1723-1762), a German astronomer noted, among other things, for his contributions to lunar mapping, for his accurate studies of the Moon's librations and for developing accurate tables for predicting the positions of the Moon and Sun. See extended biography.
  • Tobias Mayer is Entry 1415 in Mary Blagg's Collated List (1913) and appears under that name (with a recommended abbreviation of "To. May.") in the initial IAU nomenclature of Named Lunar Formations (1935). The name is attributed to Schröter.
  • The name was shortened to T. Mayer (or possibly Mayer, T.) as a result of certain spelling changes proposed by Gerard Kuiper and approved by the IAU in 1961.
  • Despite this change, Tobias Mayer was spelled in full on Charts SLC E3 and SLC E4 of the System of Lunar Craters (1966), as well as on LAC 58 (April, 1964), both of whose nomenclatures were approved by the IAU in 1964 and 1967. Whether this means the spelling was inadvertently(?) reverted back to Tobias Mayer is unclear.
  • The name is currently listed as T. Mayer in the IAU Planetary Gazetteer, the official database of IAU-approved names.
  • Wilkins and Moore proposed renaming Tobias Mayer C → "Wagner", and Tobias Mayer G → "Krosigk". Krosigk was a German astronomer, and Wagner a Hanoverian physiologist (Rudolf Wagner, 1805-1864). The IAU did not accept either name.

The Wagner mystery

  • Now here's a rather strange case, because Wagner the Hanoverian physiologist (the IAU's Tobias Mayer C) is certainly an error in Wilkins's Section 5 of his book THE MOON. There was another Wagner who was active as an astronomer at the observatory of Krosigk (Tobias Mayer G). See Johann Wilhelm Wagner (1681-1745). Detection of error: Danny Caes (I wonder if I am the very first one who discovered it).
  • Wilkins's Wagner should not be confused with a certain craterlet at Apollo 17's site which was also called Wagner.

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