NASA scientists have made a sensational discovery: The biggest lunar mare is not an impact crater, as previously believed.
Astronomers must rewrite the history of the Moon after NASA scientists made a ground breaking discovery. So far, the dominant theory has claimed that the biggest lunar mare, Oceanus Procellarum, was created in a violent collision between the Moon and an asteroid in the chaotic early history of our Solar System.
|Violent geological activity made the Moon’s crust crack, and lava flooded the surface, creating the famous lunar mare.|
Data from two NASA space probes, Ebb and Flow, shows that the approximately 2,600-km-wide mare is surrounded by long cracks filled with lava and making up a huge square. If the mare had emerged as the result of a collision with an asteroid, its perimeter would have been oval or circular. Instead, astronomers now believe that the huge lunar mare was created in the wake of violent geological activity shortly after the formation of the Moon. Just like when the tectonic plates on Earth move, triggering earthquakes, violent geological powers affected the Moon’s crust, making it crack. Red-hot lava flowed out of the cracks and flooded the region of the Moon, which is now known as Oceanus Procellarum.