Signals from seismic sensors left on the lunar surface by Apollo astronauts have revealed that the Moon has a liquid core similar to Earth’s after utilization of 21st century seismological techniques wre applied to the data being emitted from sensors placed by their colleagues during the Apollo era, (audio w/ScienceFriday or NPR).
The new NASA Huntsville research suggests the Moon possesses a solid, iron-rich inner core with a radius of nearly 150 miles and a fluid, primarily liquid-iron outer core with a radius of roughly 205 miles. Uncovering details about the lunar core is critical for developing accurate models of the Moon’s formation
The Apollo Passive Seismic Experiment consisted of four seismometers deployed between 1969 and 1972, which recorded continuous lunar seismic activity until late 1977.
Future Nasa missions will help gather more detailed data. The Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory – or GRAIL – is a Nasa Discovery-class mission set to launch in September of this year. The mission consists of twin spacecraft that will enter tandem orbits.
NASA and other space agencies have been studying concepts to establish an International Lunar Network (ILN) — a robotic set of geophysical monitoring stations on the moon — as part of efforts to coordinate international missions during the coming decade. More from MSNBC.