NASA scientists were left confused after a mysterious rocket landed on the moon and created a large crater in two different areas – it is still unclear who was behind its launch and why its impact had such a powerful effect.
No one on Earth has claimed responsibility for the possession and launch of the said rocket, and NASA cannot yet explain why the impact of the same rocket created two craters, reports The Telegraph. They also write that on March 4, a huge piece of metal was moving at a speed of 5.3 kilometers per second when it hit the surface of the Moon, but new photos, taken by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, show that the impact was different from anything before seen.
crater on the moon
– It is surprising that the crater actually consists of two craters – the eastern one is 18 meters in diameter and leans against the western crater with a diameter of 16 meters. It is this unexpected double crater that may indicate that the body of the rocket had large masses at each end. Usually a spent rocket has a mass that is concentrated at the end of its engine, and the rest of the rocket mainly consists of an empty fuel tank. Given that the origin of the rocket’s body is still unknown, the dual nature of the crater may indicate its identity – NASA said.
Amateur astronomers first suspected SpaceX, but later concluded that it was probably a body from the 2014 Chinese lunar mission (Chang’e 5-T1). China has disputed this, saying the experimental robotic spacecraft in question “certainly entered the Earth’s atmosphere and was completely burned”.
And since China announces and broadcasts its launches but does not reveal their routes, independent astronomer Bill Gray, the author of software that tracks objects in space, had to work backwards to calculate an approximate orbit.
“As much as 99.9 percent I’m sure it’s a Chinese 5-T1, not SpaceX,” he told the BBC.
So called. booster rockets (used in the first phase of the launch) from the Apollo missions left a series of craters about 40 meters wide on the surface of the Moon. In 2019, Israel’s crashed Beresheet spacecraft scattered debris across the lunar surface.
Data from Arizona State University in 2016 show that at least 47 NASA rocket bodies created “spacecraft strikes” on the moon, but NASA notes that “no other rocket body strikes on the moon have created double craters like this.”
crater on the moon