As per an earth-shattering new study, seismic activity is causing the moon to shrink and wrinkle like a raisin. The scarps form when one section of the Moon's crust (left-pointing arrows) is pushed up over an adjacent section (right-pointing arrows) as the Moon's interior cools and shrinks.
Over the past several hundred million years, it was found by NASA scientists that the moon reduced its size by 50 meters due to a cooling interior and it's still tectonically active.
Those seismometers (instruments used to measure the shaking produced by quakes) recorded the moonquakes that occurred between 1969 and 1977, which allowed Watters and his team to analyze their data using an algorithm to pinpoint the quake locations.
It turns out these faults keep the moon tectonically active, generating relatively strong quakes up to about a magnitude 5 on the Richter scale.
Researchers believe this process is still active on the moon, meaning it is still changing and still experiencing quakes. Researchers led by Thomas Watters, from the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C., published their findings Monday in Nature Geoscience.
Co-author Renee Weber, a planetary seismologist at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama said, "Since LRO has been photographing the lunar surface since 2009, the team would like to compare pictures of specific fault regions from different times to see if there is any evidence of recent moonquake activity". For example, bright patches of ground have been observed near faults, which appear to be patches of lunar regolith that have yet to be darkened by weathering and radiation.
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"We found that a number of the quakes recorded in the Apollo data happened very close to the faults seen in the [NASA's Apollo and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter missions] LRO imagery". Just five years from now, NASA will send one woman and one man back to the moon, landing on the lunar body's south pole.
They also discovered that the six of these eight quakes occur when the moon was at its farthest point away from earth.
The space agency administrator was speaking after US President Donald Trump announced an additional 1.6 billion dollars to go towards accelerating the lunar programme.
NASA hopes that more exploration of the moon will help the U.S. establish a strategic presence in space and grow their global partnerships. "We learned a lot from the Apollo missions, but they really only scratched the surface".
Mr Bridenstine has previously said Mr Trump's desire to put humans back on the moon by the year 2024 would provide an opportunity to test technology and capabilities before carrying out a mission to land on Mars by 2033.