Sunday, June 15, 2008

my cousin's crater


My father's sister's son was the geologist and archaeologist Roald H. Fryxell (frick-SELL). Aside from notable work in finding some of the oldest evidence for human activity in the Americas he was one of the initial geologists to examine moon rocks brought back by the Apollo astronauts.

That's Roald, above on the right, with Neil Armstrong in a picture I took myself at a "space symposium" they were both speaking at in 1972. This was a rare moment when Armstrong was not being mobbed by hand shakers and autograph seekers. So, of course, I shook his hand.

Via the web, I find out that Roald has a crater on the moon named after him! So where is this thing?

One may find it in the perodically visible border area between near and farside of the moon, in Mare Orientale ("Eastern Sea"... oceanfront property!)



A closer view of the Mare with some other named features:



And Fryxell Crater itself:



Sure, it looks remote now, but in 30 years we're all going to be saying "Why didn't we pass some proper zoning laws? Those McMansions have ruined the neighborhood!"

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