The polar regions of the Moon are not easily visible from Earth, and the spacecraft involved in the Apollo missions did not cover the high-latititude regions. The Clementine spacecraft was in a polar orbit around the Moon from February to May 1994, during which it imaged the entire surface and obtained the first global topographic dataset for the Moon. This view is a mosaic of several hundred Clementine images of the south polar region. Many craters and basins were seen clearly for the first time in the mosaic. Some craters near the pole may never get sunlight onto the crater floor, raising the possibility of isolated patches of perennial ice preserved in these dark craters, perhaps brought to the Moon by cometary impacts.
Image processing by U.S. Geological Survey.