Lunar and Planetary Institute

Lunar Science and Exploration
Center for Lunar Science and Exploration

A Global Lunar Landing Site Study to Provide the Scientific Context for Exploration of the Moon
Edited by David A. Kring and Daniel D. Durda
©2012, Lunar and Planetary Institute
LPI Contribution No. 1694

In 2007, the National Research Council published a report called The Scientific Context for Exploration of the Moon, which provided NASA the scientific guidance it needed for an enhanced exploration program that would provide global access to the lunar surface through an integrated robotic and human mission architecture. Over a five year period (2008-2012), eight summer study groups were organized to determine where on the surface those scientific objectives could be addressed. Maps with those locations were compiled for each scientific goal. This was a completely novel and objective way to identify the global distribution of future landing sites. In the end, when the maps for all of the goals are overlaid, a series of scientifically-rich landing sites emerge, some of which had never been considered before. A final summary report of those studies was compiled in 2012. For the broader lunar community, an electronic version of that final report is presented here for download. In addition, an ArcGIS database is presented for download for those investigators and mission architects wanting to continue processing landing site locations. 


Download complete volume (69 MB)

Title Pages

Table of Contents


Science Concept 1

Science Concept 2

Science Concept 3

Science Concept 4

Science Concept 5

Science Concept 6

Science Concept 7

South Pole-Aitken Basin




A Global Lunar Landing Site Study to Provide the Scientific Context for Exploration of the Moon book cover

Landing Site Data

ArcGIS (v. 10) database files with specific points and regions of interest on the lunar surface suitable for addressing the science objectives in Concepts 1 through 7 as described in the chapters of the written report.

Download Files:

Science Concept 2 ( 37GB )
Science Concept 3 ( 6.6GB )
Science Concept 4 ( 20GB )
Science Concept 5 ( 2.9GB )
Science Concept 6 ( 11GB )
Science Concept 7 ( 15GB )
South Pole-Aitken Basin ( 3.7GB )

Kepler crater

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