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View Full Version : What colour is the lunar soil?



BrianT
2006-May-02, 09:39 PM
I've read somewhere that the lunar soil is "charcoal black", yet in the photographs of the Apollo missions on the lunar suface, the soil looks about medium/light grey. Is it lighter simply due to the harsh sunlight, in the way that hair looks lighter in sunlight, or was it due to the way the film was eveloped afterwards?

PhantomWolf
2006-May-02, 10:03 PM
It's about the same colour as asphalt, which can appear a dark gray in the shade to a light gray in the bright gray direct sunlight. One of the reasons that it appears lighter is that most of the sunlight that hits it is directed back towards the source, thus the more light hitting it the brighter it appears.

Jorge
2006-May-02, 10:29 PM
intereszting so the moon is black :) hehe nice little fact to trow at friends and whack them around a bit

George
2006-May-03, 03:32 AM
There is a range of colors for lunar rocks. Observing the ones that were returned are easier to see, perhaps. NASA (http://www.nasm.edu/galleries/cchoice/moonrocks/moonrocks1.htm)has a nice site for moon rocks.

I have images showing the lunar surface as blue, then the next image of the same spot makes the soil look somewhat pink. Color rendering makes a big difference.

There was one region, however, that surprised an astronaut when he came upon an orange area of soil.

sol_g2v
2006-May-03, 06:26 AM
There is a range of colors for lunar rocks. Observing the ones that were returned are easier to see, perhaps. NASA ("http://www.nasm.edu/galleries/cchoice/moonrocks/moonrocks2.htm)has a nice site for moon rocks.

I have images showing the lunar surface as blue, then the next image of the same spot makes the soil look somewhat pink. Color rendering makes a big difference.

There was one region, however, that surprised an astronaut when he came upon an orange area of soil.

Strangely, your NASA link takes me to the home page of Microsoft. Had no idea they owned NASA now.

01101001
2006-May-03, 06:40 AM
Strangely, your NASA link takes me to the home page of Microsoft. Had no idea they owned NASA now.
If you didn't figure it out yourself, try: NASA (actually Smithsonian NASM) (http://www.nasm.edu/galleries/cchoice/moonrocks/moonrocks2.htm).

gwiz
2006-May-03, 08:12 AM
I remember a magazine - Life? - doing a feature on the first colour camaera on the lunar surface - Surveyor 3? - "At last these pictures show us the true colour of the lunar surface - a rich and varied grey".

George
2006-May-03, 01:33 PM
Strangely, your NASA link takes me to the home page of Microsoft. Had no idea they owned NASA now.
Sorry, 01101001 got it right. [I did fix it, thanks]