Temperatures on the Lunar Surface
Section M 3.5.
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Lunar Surface Temperatures

Temperatures on the Lunar surface vary widely on location. Although beyond the first few centimeters of the regolith the temperature is a nearly constant -35 C (at a depth of 1 meter), the surface is influenced widely by the day-night cycle. The average temperature on the surface is about 40-45 C lower than it is just below the surface.

In the day, the temperature of the Moon averages 107 C, although it rises as high as 123 C. The night cools the surface to an average of -153 C, or -233 C in the permanently shaded south polar basin. A typical non-polar minimum temperature is -181 C (at the Apollo 15 site).

The Lunar temperature increases about 280 C from just before dawn to Lunar noon. Average temperature also changes about 6 C betwen aphelion and perihelion.

Marvin Ostrega

Reference: Heiken et al. Lunar Sourcebook: A User's Guide to the Moon. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Press, 1991.

Also see: Surface Temperature of the Moon and Mars in section 2.5.1.

Temperatures on the Lunar Surface

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