The rate at which cratering events currently occur on the Moon is considered in light of their influence on the use of the Moon as a radiometric standard. The radiometric effect of small impact events is determined empirically from the study of Clementine images. Events that would change the integral brightness of the moon by 1% are expected once per 1.4 Gyr. Events that cause a 1% shift in one pixel for low Earth-orbiting instruments with a 1-km nadir field of view are expected approximately once each 43 Myr. Events discernible at 1% radiometric resolution with a 5 arc-sec telescope resolution correspond to crater diameters of approximately 210 m and are expected once every 200 years. These rates are uncertain by a factor of two. For a fixed illumination and observation geometry, the Moon can be considered photometrically stable to 1 ?? 10-8per annum for irradiance, and 1 ?? 10-7per annum for radiance at a resolution common for spacecraft imaging instruments, exceeding reasonable instrument goals by six orders of magnitude. ?? 1997 Academic Press.
|Title||Photometric stability of the lunar surface|
|Authors||H. H. Kieffer|
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|