Lunar Photogeologic Chart (LPC 58)

Prototype Chart – Copernicus

The prototype map for the U. S. Geological Survey’s program of systematic geologic mapping of the Moon at a scale of 1:1M.  Branch of Astrogeology founder Eugene M. Shoemaker compiled the geology of the Copernicus region onto an experimental standardized map (Lunar Prototype Chart, LPC) drawn in February 1960 at the U. S. Air Force’s Chart and Information Center (ACIC) in St. Louis, Missouri.  Shoemaker (with contributions from R.J. Hackman) mapped the geological units of the Copernicus area, ranked them by relative age (Imbrium basin units as the oldest and fresh crater materials as the youngest), and used these rock units to define the time-stratigraphic system that is used today.

This color map was not formally published.  It was printed by the ACIC as a prototype for a systematic, 1:1M series of 44 geologic quadrangle maps covering most of the near side of the Moon to support the forthcoming Apollo missions to the Moon.  Although a small portion of this map was reproduced in color in the November, 1963 issue of Fortune magazine, we are pleased to present this special, unseen bit of space history to lunar students everywhere.

Paul Spudis

Click here to download a 150 dpi JPEG image (15 MB)

Click here to download a 300 dpi JPEG image (66 MB)

Click here to download a 300 dpi JPEG 2000 image (8.5 MB) (Requires JPEG 2000 viewer)