The moon

, Volume 5, Issue 1–2, pp 200–205 | Cite as

Cosmic influences on the early history of the lunar surface

  • Zdeněk Kopal


It is pointed out that the observed random distribution of low-angle impact craters over the lunar surface rules out the possibility that particles initially responsible for the origin of such craters had, prior to impact, been in heliocentric orbits. The observed facts are more consistent with a view that particles responsible for most of large primary impact at the earliest stage of lunar history were moving with the Earth-Moon gravitational dipole, and may have represented leftovers from the formation of this pair of cosmic bodies. The application of a similar argument to an equally obvious lack of directional effects in Martian cratering is, however, invalidated by a relatively large inclination of the Martian equator to the orbital plane of this planet.


Directional Effect Similar Argument Random Distribution Early History Lunar Surface 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Clemence, G. M. and Brouwer, D.: 1955,Astron. J. 60, 168.Google Scholar
  2. Gault, D. E.: 1972,The Moon, to be published.Google Scholar
  3. Koziel, K.: 1967a,Icarus 7, 1.Google Scholar
  4. Koziel, K.: 1967b, inMeasure of the Moon (ed. by Z. Kopal and C. L. Goudas), D. Reidel Publ. Co., Dordrecht, pp. 3–11.Google Scholar
  5. Marcus, A. H.: 1966,Icarus 5, 165, 178, 190, 590.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© D. Reidel Publishing Company 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zdeněk Kopal
    • 1
  1. 1.The Lunar Science InstituteHoustonUSA

Personalised recommendations