NASA / GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTER SCIENTIFIC VISUALIZATION STUDIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTER SCIENTIFIC VISUALIZATION STUDIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Lunar surface. Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) view of a close-ups of the Aristarchus Plateau and the Taurus-Littrow valley, the landing site of the Apollo 17 lunar lander. Apollo 17, the last mission to land on the Moon, touched down in the Taurus-Littrow valley on 11th December, 1972. Astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt spent a total of 22 hours on the lunar surface. The Aristarchus Plateau is first shown in a natural-colour view before a view with topographic colour-coding. The colour-coding shows the surface topography, using data gathered by the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) on the LRO spacecraft in orbit around the Moon. Surface height is colour-coded, with white areas being the highest elevation, through red, yellow, green and blue, with purple being the lowest elevation. The LRO was launched on 18th June 2009.
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