Friday, September 10, 2010

Details of Conon rima and Appenine mountains

May 2, 2009 – 18:15 to 18:35 UT
200cm SCT – 240x - Seeing: 9/10.

I scanned the lunar area next to the terminator on May 2nd at 18 UT . The Apennine mountains are always a fascinating mountain chain to observe and wonder about their landscape, their rugged tops and deep edges.

The seeing was almost perfect and the very interesting delicate Conon rima was evident (Longitude 2.0 East; Latitude 18.0 North). It seems that the rima originates on the Apennine mountains, which cuts through the mountains and distends itself into the smooth Mare Vaporum. It resembles much like a riverbed running from the base of the Apennines. Its fine, serpentine structure with a narrow, uniform width came into focus for long enough moments to enable me to sketch it. At 2E, 18N next to rima conon, a "rima doublet" feature was also resolvable. The Apollo Mapping Camera (Rima Conon_A17 3) shows it as a double rima system with sharp narrow walls situated in Mare Vaporum.

Crater Conon is a 20km wide round crater (1.9E, 22.3N) and showed as a steep bright slopes indicative of little erosion along the inner wall. A near central hill was evident. 

Through a local yahoo user group (, I managed to receive an image from Leonard Ellul Mercer from Malta taken at pretty much the same time. Quite a coincidence - and this was a good way to check out the difference in observation details between my sketch and CCD photo taken at the same sun elevation on the monn's surface. The figure on the left is my sketch and the one on the right is a zoomed image of the area taken by astro-photographer Ellul Mercer.

This sketch was published in the June issue of ALPO's TLO.

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