Bessel Crater, Moon

Steven Dutch, Professor Emeritus, Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay

Bessel is a small crater about 16 kilometers in diameter and 1.7 kilometers deep (10 miles across and a mile deep). It is very fresh looking, so it must be fairly young. However, on the moon change is very slow and "young" means the crater could be 50 million years old. Numerous small craters within Bessel suggest it's at least a few million years old. On earth a crater like this would have been obscured by erosion, although the effects of the impact on the rocks would probably still be visible. The interesting thing about the crater is the way the walls caved in after the crater formed, resulting in landslides on the bottom. The photograph used to make the drawing was taken by the Apollo 15 astronauts in 1971.

Original Scene

Possible Coloring

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Created 25 November 2005, Last Update 15 January 2020