Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2000 March 19
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.

Apollo 16: Exploring Plum Crater
Credit: John W. Young, Apollo 16 Crew, NASA

Explanation: Apollo 16 spent three days on Earth's Moon in April 1972. The fifth lunar landing mission out of six, Apollo 16 was famous for deploying and using an ultraviolet telescope as the first lunar observatory, and for collecting rocks and data on the mysterious lunar highlands. In the above picture, astronaut John W. Young photographs Charles M. Duke, Jr. collecting rock samples at the Descartes landing site. Duke stands by Plum Crater while the Lunar Roving Vehicle waits parked in the background. The Lunar Roving Vehicle allowed the astronauts to travel great distances to investigate surface features and collect rocks. High above, Thomas K. Mattingly orbits in the Command Module.

Tomorrow's picture: Mercury Setting

< | Archive | Index | Search | Calendar | Glossary | Education | About APOD | >

Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA/ GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.