Journal Highlights

Choosing a Lunar Landing Site

Editors' Vox—

Although engineering capability and safety are important considerations, the primary goal when choosing an optimal landing site on the Moon for a science mission is to maximize the scientific return.

A research article recently published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets by Zhao et al. [2017] describes two candidate landing sites in consideration for the Chang’e 5 mission, a lunar mission planned by the China National Space Administration, originally slated to launch in 2017 but which has now been delayed. One of the most exciting aspects of Chang’e 5 is that it aims to return up to 2 kilograms of samples to Earth. But from which site should these samples be taken?....more