The Moon's True Colors

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Though the moon is mostly colorless, there are slight variations in the colors of sunlight reflected by different regions because of differences in chemical composition. These small variations are digitally enhanced in the photograph on the right. The white lunar highlands have minerals composed of silicon, calcium and aluminum. The lowlands were formed from massive impact basins. Cracks in the crust allowed lava to flow up and fill in the basins, creating the lunar maria (“seas”). The cooled lava basalts are often rich in titanium, which reflects more blue light, and iron, which reflects in the red.

1/250 sec exposure, Canon 20D, ISO 100, 127mm SCT @f/10. LRGB=[RGB,R,(R+B)/2,B] saturation enhanced
Potawatomi Wildlife Park, Marshall County, Indiana