Accession Number : AD0607354

Title :   THE MEAN DISTANCE TO THE MOON AS DETERMINED BY RADAR.

Descriptive Note : Interim rept.,

Corporate Author : NAVAL RESEARCH LAB WASHINGTON D C

Personal Author(s) : Yaplee,B. S. ; Knowles,S. H. ; Shapiro,A. ; Craig,K. J. ; Brouwer,D.

Report Date : 16 SEP 1964

Pagination or Media Count : 22

Abstract : The distance to the moon was measured by radar from October 1959 to July 1960 with a basic resolution of =150m. The measured distance from the observing station to the nearest point of the moon was corrected for the earth's rotation and the motion of the moon. In addition, the libration of the moon changes the nearest point of reflection with time. As observations were made over many months, several returns from the same lunar area were obtained. The monthly variations in distance due to lunar topography were used to derive an equivalent radar topographical map around the central region of the moon. This map provided the necessary corrections to account for lunar topographical variations. All the measured distance after applying the above corrections were used in a least square solution with the best known constants. The solution yielded a value of 384,400 km =1.2 km for the mean distance to the moon. The uncertainty of 1.2 km is mainly due to the uncertainty of the lunar radius. Using this mean distance, a value of 6,378,167 m for the earth's equatorial radius was determined. (Author)

Descriptors :   (*MOON, RADIO ASTRONOMY), (*RADIO ASTRONOMY, MOON), MAPS, RANGE FINDING, ERRORS, TERRAIN

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE