The new moon

Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 11:00 AM



Despite its phase changes, the same side of the moon always faces Earth, like a giant eyeball keeping watch over us. And for most of history, that's all we ever did in return: stare back. Until 1969, that is, when Neil Armstrong took his famous first steps. It's not easy to fly to the moon yourself, but we can offer the next best thing.

As you may have heard, we've released a new version of Google Moon, one that fully eclipses its predecessor. This update brings higher-resolution map imagery, text search, and photos and stories from every Apollo landing. We even included Street View-style panoramas of the moon's surface, taken by the Apollo astronauts ... something you won't see anywhere else. And last but certainly not least, we tossed in scientific charts that are good enough for actual mission planning and science classrooms alike. Check out the about page for more info on all of these features.

Just like the Apollo landings, this was a genuine group effort. Noel Gorelick and I worked with our colleagues at NASA Ames Research Center to apply the work that we did for Google Mars to the moon. It was an opportunity made possible by Google and NASA's Space Act Agreement, and we hope to continue this collaboration with talented researchers like Matt Hancher, Michael Broxton, Noelle Steber, and the rest of the Ames team on other great space-related projects.

The new Google Moon makes a nice addition to our growing space family, which also includes Google Mars and Sky. If you haven't already, be sure to check out each of these great educational tools.