Google maps the moon
Google has added a 3D moonscape to Google Earth, in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
The newly created moonscape for Google Earth allows people to explore the lunar surface and follow guided tours from former astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Jack Schmitt.
There’s also a selection of panoramic “street view” photos and video clips taken over the past 40 years of lunar exploration.
Other curiosities include an ability to overlay the 3D terrain with planning charts used by NASA to plot missions. These charts map out landing sites and list the location of “artefacts” left behind from previous missions.
“Forty years ago, two human beings walked on the moon. Starting today, with Moon in Google Earth, it’s now possible for anyone to follow in their footsteps,” says Michael Weiss-Malik, a product manager at Google. “We’re giving hundreds of millions of people around the world unprecedented access to an interactive 3D presentation of the Apollo missions.”
The 3D moonscape is the latest project to emerge from the collaboration between Google and NASA as part of their Space Act Agreement signed in 2006.
The act pledges that the two organisations will work together to use Google’s technical expertise to bring NASA’s research to a wider audience.