Unlike earth, the moon has no atmosphere to protect it from space junk. On May 17 a boulder sized piece of that space junk slammed into the surface of the moon at almost 60,000 mph. Had you been looking at the moon when it happened, you would have seen the flash without a telescope. The impact was equal to the power of 5 tons of TNT. All from a boulder not much larger than a beach ball.
Since 2005 NASA has been monitoring “lunar impacts”, and report this one is by far the largest and brightest they’ve seen. They estimate the crater to be 20 meters across.
This year COPUOS did something that warms my heart – space weather was added to the agenda.
Anyone who knows me, or reads this blog on a regular basis; understands how strongly I stand on educating the masses in matters of space. It boggles my pondering mind why solar wind, sunspot activity, and geomagnetic disturbances are not part of the daily weather reports.
By adding space weather to the COPUOS agenda, the United Nations acknowledges the potential ass kicking our sun could deliver. I won’t hold my breath, but the possibility exists that with the UN on board I just might live to see the day when everyone knows what a CME is.