China Releases Detailed Geological Map Of The Moon


Word Count

302 words

Reading Level

Listen to Article

The Chinese Academy of Sciences recently released the 1:2,500,000 scale lunar map. (Credit: NSSC/CAS)

Over the years, there have been numerous attempts to document the surface of the Moon. However, none have been as comprehensive as the map released by the Chinese Academy of Sciences on June 14, 2022.

Compiled by geologists Jianzhong Liu and Ziyuan Ouyang, it boasts a scale of 1:2,500,000 million. This means that one centimeter on the map corresponds to 2.5 million centimeters of the lunar surface. In comparison, the detailed lunar map released by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) in 2020 had a scale of 1:5,000,000.

The recent high-resolution image was created using 15 years of data collected from the ongoing Chinese Lunar Exploration Program. Liu and Ouyang also used information from lunar exploration missions conducted by the US, Japan, and India.

The map was compiled using data collected by the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program (Credit:

The map identifies the precise locations of every known lunar rock, crater, basin, and structure. This includes 17 rock types, 12,341 craters, 81 impact basins, and 14 surface structures. Geological discoveries made at the sampling sites of the historic 1969-1972 Apollo missions and the landing site of the 2020 Chang’e 5 mission — where the youngest lunar rock known to date was found — are also marked.

The researchers believe the thorough lunar image will contribute significantly to scientific research. The map will also be a reliable resource for finding safe landing places for future lunar missions.

Meanwhile, the European Space Agency (ESA) focused its efforts on creating "the most accurate complete multidimensional map of the Milky Way." Released on June 13, 2022, it was compiled using data from Gaia, a space observatory launched in 2013. With its dual optical telescopes, Gaia can map the motion, luminosity, temperature, and composition of billions of stars. The information will give astronomers further insights into the evolution of our galaxy. It will also help them better understand the lifecycle of stars.



Get the Workbook for this article!

Workbook contains: Article, Reading Comprehension, Critical Thinking Questions, Vocabulary in Context (+ answers), Multiple Choice Quiz (+ answers), Parts of Speech Quiz (+ answers), Vocabulary Game (+ answers)
Cite Article
Learn Keywords in this Article
  • horizon
    horizon6 months
    • vygihacabomu
      vygihacabomu6 months
      i like it
      • poked128
        poked1287 months
        This map shows people that the landing are not fake
        • kathybooklover
          I kinda get how China makes all these things. Almost all of my glass stuff, their from China. Again, #Moon #China
          • iloveanimals101
            Cool but i wonder why anyone would need a detailed map of the moon anyway, but any way maybe because scientists want to explore it more just in case? IDK yet though. #Moon #Space #SpaceExploration
            • gobipycagiro
              kemme078 months
              China is smart after all 🤔🤔. So I should say it's cool. But still I don't like the colors.
            • sassycat9
              sassycat98 months
              • iheartpuppies
                Fun fact about the moon (or a bunch- I love space) the same side of the moon always faces earth, there are three creators that resembles Mickey Mouse's face, the moon has no wind at all, so foot prints on the moon will be there forever, and the first US flag on the moon now would have turned white. (Sorry, I don't know why)
              • iheartpuppies
                Wow! So these maps are so detailed! Although it makes me wonder, for the us map, it would have been biger , using bigger porpotions, wouldn't that have just been a bigger map?
                • adroit_avimimus