The first images of the place where a rocket abandoned in space crashed on the Moon. The crater is weird
Article by: Andacs Robert Eugen, on 28 June 2022, at 00:01 am Los Angeles time
An abandoned rocket crashed on March 4 on the invisible face of the moon. The images now sent by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter took astronomers by surprise, because the crater formed does not resemble those left by other rockets that fell on the surface of the natural satellite.
The rocket fragment weighed three tons and was monitored for several years, but its origin remained unknown. Initially, astronomers thought the fragment may have come from a rocket launched by SpaceX, the company of billionaire Elon Musk, and then said it was, in fact, part of a Chinese rocket, but China denied this hypothesis.
Surprisingly, however, the crashed rocket formed two craters, instead of one, as NASA scientists expected. The crater from the east is 18 meters in diameter and is slightly superimposed over a crater to the west, 16 meters in diameter, according to NASA.
This may indicate that the body of the rocket had large masses at each end. Usually, a used rocket has a concentrated mass at the end of the engine; the rest of the rocket consists mainly of an empty fuel tank. However, the double nature of the crater gives clues about the origin of the rocket.
No other rocket body has left a double crater on impact with the Moon. The four craters left by the Apollo SIV-B rockets had an irregular contour and were much larger, with a diameter of 35-38 meters.