Lunar and Planetary Institute

Apollo 15 Landing Site/Hadley Rille Flyover


The Apollo 15 mission was the first of the multiple-objective missions (called "J" missions) to landing sites with complex geology. The Apollo 15 site was selected because it provided access to massifs along the edge of the Imbrium impact basin and younger mare lavas and volcanic landforms, like the spectacular Hadley Rille. The massifs are composed of anorthosites, Mg-suite plutonic rocks, impact melts, and thermally metamorphosed impact melts (granulites). These samples suggest the Imbrium Basin was created by an impact event ~3.85 billion years ago. The lavas that erupted among the massifs are much younger, forming about 3.3 billion years ago. The lavas include both olivine- and quartz-normative basalt, plus a basalt rich with incompatible elements (K, REE, and P). Pyroclastic deposits of ultramafic glassy beads called green glass vitrophyres were also collected in the area, providing a unique view of the deep lunar interior.


The imagery for this virtual flyover was scanned from Apollo Metric Camera frame AS15-M-1134. The area boundaries represented are 2.5 - 5.0 east longitude and 25.0 - 27.0 north latitude. The Digital Terrain Model (DTM) was derived by digitizing contours on the Hadley Lunar Topographic Orthophotomap (LTO-41B4) and interpolating the values to a regular grid.


Original data provided courtesy of NASA Apollo program. Image processing, DTM extraction and movie production were performed at the USRA Lunar and Planetary Institute by Dr. Paul Spudis and Brian Fessler.


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