Gallery: Our Moon's marvelous mountains

A peek at lunar peaks, mountain rings, volcanic domes, and more.

The Moon is home to some amazing mountains. Unlike the millions of years it takes for most mountains on Earth to form via slowly colliding tectonic plates, most lunar mountains form near-instantly by asteroid or cometary impacts. I have previously explained how various Moon mountains form and why to explore them so in this post I just want us to appreciate how beautiful they are. Let’s see some lunar mountains.

Note: You can click on the images to learn about each feature.

The 1.6-kilometer-high central peak of Tycho crater. Credit: NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO)
The arc-shaped mountain range of Apenninus on the Moon. Credit: Tom Wildoner
A landscape of mountains, part of the Montes Carpatus volcanic range. Credit: NASA LRO
A spectacular closeup view of the Aristarchus crater and its central mountain. Credit: NASA LRO
The mountainous cape of Promontorium Heraclides on the Moon, surrounded by (now solidified) lava flows on three sides. Credit: NASA LRO
King crater and its Y-shaped mountains on the Moon’s farside, as captured from orbit by Apollo 16. Credit: NASA
The 2.3 kilometers tall Mons Piton, one of the few peaks from the largely buried inner mountain ring of the Imbrium basin. Credit: NASA LRO
The unique volcanic domes of Gruithuisen—Gamma and Delta. Credit: NASA LRO
The crown-shaped mountain ring in the 312 kilometers wide Schrödinger crater. Credit: NASA LRO
The 2.3 kilometers tall South Massif mountain that borders the Taurus Littrow Valley where the Apollo 17 astronauts landed. Credit: NAS LRO
The 8.8 kilometers high Zeeman mountain on the Moon’s farside, competing with Earth’s Mount Everest. Credit: NASA LRO
An unnamed 7 kilometers tall mountain on the Moon’s farside. Credit: NASA LRO
Changing morphology of mountains and craters on the Moon with increasing crater sizes. Image credits: NASA LRO, Graphic: Jatan Mehta

Hope you enjoyed these curated images of some of the most amazing mountains on the Moon. As you may have noted, many of these views are captured by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. Their outreach team has a fantastic blog where you can browse more lunar mountains and other Moon-candy, and learn about them.

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