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Orientale Basin
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Orientale Basin

November 30, 2012
The mosaic is of the multi-ring basin Orientale, the youngest of the large lunar basins. Orientale is only partially flooded by later eruptions of mare basalt, unlike basins like Imbrium, so its internal structure is still visible. This view into the interior can help us learn more about basin formation and the mechanics of how basins develop their concentric rings. Orientale is the site of two exploration regions of interest; one was the subject of a past featured image, the other is located near Kopff crater inside the basin. Kopff has unusual fractures in its floor, and the impact crater may have been modified by later volcanic activity, making it an exciting place to visit. A NAC view inside one of the fractures on the floor of Kopff crater, a 41 km crater within the Orientale basin and near the Orientale 2 exploration region of interest. Image M122794259RE, scene width is 670 m. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University


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