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Mechanical Properties of Lunar Soils in Published Report


Availability: At NSSDC, Ready for Offline Distribution (or Staging if Digital)

Time span: 1969-11-19 to 1969-11-20


This data set consists of the published paper on the mechanical properties of the lunar regolith, by R.F. Scott, W.D. Carrier, N.C. Costes, and J.K. Mitchell. The paper first appeared in the Apollo 12 Preliminary Science Report, NASA-SP-235, pp. 161-182. It was concluded that the surface material taken by Apollo 12 was quite similar to that found at the Apollo 11 landing site. Particles at the Apollo 12 site became somewhat coarser with increasing depth than at the 11 landing site. Cohesion of the soil was small but finite. The material formed clods or clumps, compacted easily, and stood at high angles of slope. The following properties of the soil were measured -- static bearing pressure, between 55.2 and 75.8 times 10 to the third power dyn/cm sq - density, 1.5 g/cc (bulk density, 1.9-2.0 g/cc) - angle of internal friction, 35-39 deg - cohesion, from 3.5 to 7 times 10 to the third power dyn/cm sq. Deformation of soil resulted from shear effects rather than compression - the soil was practically incompressible. Little change in the surface had occurred at the Surveyor 2 site in the 2 1/2 yr it had been on the lunar surface.

Alternate Names

  • Pub.Rtp.of Mechanical Properties


  • Planetary Science: Geology and Geophysics


  • 69-099C-10A

Additional Information



Questions and comments about this data collection can be directed to: Dr. David R. Williams



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