Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Geometry in Hortensius

Today we start a new series on this blog. I am now in the process of transferring all of the old Lunaranomalies.com articles over here to the LABlog. It will be tedious, but we'll eventually get the entire site transferred. We start with an article about anomalies in the Hortensius region of the Moon...

Lunar Orbiter frame 3-123M sent to me by Steve Troy showing his original markups and recommended sectionals. I have added scale markers and references.

Hortensius is an equatorial [6 degrees N, 28 degrees W] near-side 14 km crater just southwest of Copernicus. The region is dominated by a series of volcanic domes stretching several hundred miles north of the crater itself.

When I originally got LO-3-123M and the sectionals from Steve Troy, I wasn't all that excited. Sure, there were some interesting patterns and the "volcanic" domes of this area don't look all that volcanic, but I had basically decided this would be a backburner project. Then I looked at the sectionals. They revealed a vast expanse of regular geometric patterning that seemed to flow in the same directions, parallel to each other all the way across the frames and crossing at very regular perpendicular angles. They were also not in line with the "grain" of the film and were substantial enough to be obvious with a magnifying glass. You can even note them on the highly compressed crude scan above. The fact that Hortensius is reasonably close to Copernicus and its possible box like structure added some extra interest. Volcanic fracturing can certainly cause parallel patterns, but perpendicularity over a vast (100 square kilometers) area is far harder to explain away as volcanic. In addition, the patterning seemed to be more like channels or tubes rather than a fracture pattern.

The really weird thing though was that a lot of this pattering was on top of the feeble ejecta blanket around Hortensius (the big crater in the lower middle) itself, hinting that it either came after the formation of the crater, or was only partially obliterated by the thin ejecta layer. Now, completely setting aside for the moment the strange lack of "spew" from such a large impact, my eyes were drawn to the area to the right of Hortensius, between it and Hortensius C, the smaller (about 7 km diameter) crater at the image's right edge. In here, I noted (as Steve had) some very significant geometry and some overt structures.

Note the rectilinear pattern all across the sectional image and especially the very odd looking "dunes" in the area of the arrow. I also thought that the underside of the crater just above the right corner of the arrowhead looked quite strange, and Steve had noticed the bright triangular region just to the left of this crater (above the framelet line) and dubbed it the "Fan". I proceeded to scan these two areas at high resolutions.

The "Factory Complex"

Wide perspective

Contrast enhanced version

This stunning region is about 4 x 3 kilometers, judging by the size of Hortensius C. It is dominated by triangular "hanger doors" leading to semi-recessed bunker like structures, and a stunning black box shaped object the size of a 10 story building. In addition, the pronounced right angle pattern in the foreground is reminiscent of barely covered tunnel network. There is also a striking symmetry in the exposed areas (the T-shaped feature behind the "building" for instance). There are parallel terraces all along the right side of this "Factory", and perpendicular striations (access roads?) around the "bunkers". Conceivably, the "Tunnel Network" could be lava tubes formed in the ancient past similar to riles and ridges seen in other regions of the moon. However, it should also be observed that such tubes have been proposed as ideal locations for eventual human bases on the Lunar surface because they provide easily sealed off cavities with natural protection from the harsh radiation and temperature variations that would be encountered.

"Bunker Row"

This series of raised, parallel triangular openings are recessed into the surrounding terrain, and compare favorably to the Iraqi Hardened Aircraft Bunkers shown at right. Notice the similarity of structure and scale between the features in each photo. The major difference is that the Iraqi bunkers are exposed in the flat Persian Gulf desert, while the Hortensius openings are dug in to terraced Lunar topography. This reinforces the impression of a factory or storage complex. Note also the straight line behind the first set of "bunkers" and compare it with the access roads behind the Iraqi site. Organized facilities display regular, repeating patterns and identical features over wide distances. Natural formations are far more random.

The shadows cast by the bunkers are inconsistent with oval cratering caused by ejecta impacts. To say this arrangement of objects is anomalous is a wild understatement. They are flatly inexplicable in a currently accepted or theorized geologic model.

In the upper right of the image is a rectilinear spine-like formation, again showing regular repeating geometry on the same scale over a significant area. Note also that this is 90° to the horizontal "road" behind the forward row of bunkers.

The "Lincoln Memorial"

Quite simply, there is no conventional natural explanation for this set of objects. Indeed, there is no conceivable geologic process or set of processes which can account for these structures. The large black "monolith" in the center of the image is resting on a rectangular "plank" stretching across a gaping chasm ( I hesitate to refer to it as a crater, since it has virtually no crater-like characteristics). If there is a crater there, it is decidedly rectangular, and has some very strange aspects to it's appearance. Notice that there is no discernable rim, and compare it with countless other examples of sharp edged impact regions across the Lunar landscape. The "Lincoln Memorial" itself is a roughly cubic shape, with spherical nodes or buttresses at the base along the "plank". There is a strange webbing behind the "Memorial", faintly visible in the darkness of the recessed area. Lincoln also seems to have a "head", approximately spherical and casting a vast shadow over his "chest". To the right, a canister like object seems to be linking the "plank" to the main body of the facility.

Note the shadow cast beneath "Lincoln" seems to be a hollow area with no visible support for the structure. The "plank" itself would seem to be only thing holding the "Memorial" up.

This ultra-high resolution scan of the top of the "Lincoln Memorial" displays many exotic aspects of this unique structure. Note the overall symmetry, the flat platform underneath the shadow and the spherical nodes at either end. The "Head" itself is revealed as a rounded shape, and it is clearly in front of the odd "webbing" in the background. The flat projection at the base of the shadow appears to be an opening or landing platform. This "platform" has a wall like enclosure which seems to have a partially closed door mechanism.

The "Truss"

The "Truss" has cylindrical central body spanning the "plank" and the edge of the "terraces". It is anchored at both ends by a half-slot shaped end cap which extends to the ground on each side. The archway underneath the cylindrical shape is plainly visible. This object would appear to be a support or reinforcing member holding the "plank" up.

The "Overhang"

Just to the upper right of the "Factory" area is another anomalous feature. Jutting from the top of a darkened recess is this symmetrical disk shaped object. Notice it is supported from the upper rear by a strut, and that the surrounding terrain seems to flow into the darkness below it, as if this were the entrance to an underground bunker or complex. Given it's location adjacent to the "Factory", this may indeed be precisely that. Note the generally square shape of the opening, and again the even symmetry of the both the "Overhang" itself and chasm it seems to guard. There is also a light, dome shaped node just beneath the "Overhang" in the darkened area which may be indicative of light (from the nearly directly overhead sun) creeping through thinned areas of the "Overhang" itself, or possibly of some form of self luminescence. A final possibility is that the "Overhang" itself has a light source in its central disk and this is projecting downward.
This highly overexposed and enlarged view of the area shows that the light source may be a dome shaped object, or perhaps a feature similar to the wedge shaped object to the left of the disk which has broken off from a symmetrical mount on the right hand side. Consider the image below.

By flipping the left half of the image I was able to create a proposal for how the area may have looked if in fact the bright area is a broken symmetrical arrangement. This is for visualization purposes only and is presented as an example of one possible explanation.

The "Square"

This area between the "Crater" and the "Factory" appears to be a shallow, rectangular depression roughly 300 X 400 yards. Its vertices run absolutely parallel to the major features of the "Overhang" the "Factory" and the "Bunkers". Given the sun angle, the shadow indicates a deep chasm inconsistent with cratering. A platform extends into this dark area with "ramps" on either side. By itself, the feature is nothing particularly unusual, but in context with the other features it is representative of pattern of artificiality throughout the vicinity of Hortensius.

Arcological Comparisons

Many characteristics of the "Factory", and indeed the entire Hortensius region are evocative of the "Arcology" concept first described by Paolo Solari. Note the tiered, protected portions backed by raised structures, enclosed by yet larger structures. The "Factory" represents one of the best illustrations of the use of this concept. This resemblance alone is a significant pillar of the artificiality argument.