Mun

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Mun/Data

Mun, also known as the Mun and sometimes written as Mün, is a large moon orbiting Kerbin. It can be thought of as an analogue to our own Moon. It is gray in appearance with craters of various sizes and mountains exceeding 3400 m in height. The gravitational pull the surface is 1.63 m/s², 8.18 m/s² less than that of Kerbin and about the surface gravity of Earth's Moon (1.624 m/s²). It is possible to land on the Mun or use it for gravity assist (gravitational slingshots) to outer bodies such as Minmus or into Kerbol orbit.

There are anomalous geological formations called Mun Arches and Monoliths (also known as munoliths) that can be found on the surface of the Mun. To preserve the enjoyment of exploration for new players, those who have found these sites are encouraged to keep their exact coordinates secret.

Synchronous orbit around the Mun is not possible, since it would have to occur at an altitude of 0.00 m, beyond the Mun's sphere of influence. However, putting your spacecraft just outside Mun's SOI and having the same SMA would make it appear stationary. A normal 25 km orbit can be achieved using around 800 m/s delta V. A semi-synchronous orbit with half the rotation period of the Mun is possible at approximately 1797.41 kilometers.

Terrain

The Mun's terrain is smooth, grey, and scarred by craters. Its low-lying areas tend to be darker in color. The Mun also features canyons which can be hundreds of meters deep and a few kilometers long.

The Mun's highest points reach a maximum altitude of 3340 m and are located near the poles. The highest point within 45° latitude of the equator has an altitude of 2967 m and is located at 129.64° W, 0.97° N, on the north side of a canyon which is on the east edge of a large crater. Its lowest point, at altitude 0 m, is also on the east side of a large crater, at 35.42° E, 8.27° N.

For equatorial Mun landings, expect touchdown at an altitude between 1600m and 1200m.

When terrain scatter is activated in the graphics settings, the Mun has rocks scattered on its surface. Like all terrain scatters, these rocks are strictly cosmetic and do not collide with ships or Kerbals.

The Mun also has several hidden surprises for explorers to find:

Spoiler:
  • There are three large stone arches. Due to their size they can be spotted easily from a low (<10km) orbit near the equator.
  • There is a memorial honoring Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon. It can be found inside one of the largest craters, near the south wall. It is at nearly the same coordinates where Apollo 11 first landed on the moon. It appears as a tiny white dot from low orbit.
  • There are three monoliths ("Munoliths"). These are very hard to find because of their small size.

Observation of Kerbin

The Mun's orbit keeps it directly above Kerbin's equator. Because the Mun is tidally locked to Kerbin with a perfectly circular, noninclined orbit, exactly 50% of the Mun's surface (excluding areas on the edge obscured by the Mun's mountains) is ever visible from Kerbin. This also means that Kerbin is only visible from this same 50% of the Mun's surface, and that Kerbin never sets or rises as seen from the Mun. The Mun longitude for which Kerbin remains directly above in the sky (at the Zenith) is about 47 degrees east. The Mun's equator is coplanar with Kerbin's, so any location on the Mun's equator that faces Kerbin will also face Kerbin's equator.Kerbin is not tidally locked to the Mun, so any point on the Mun where Kerbin is not obscured by the Mun's landscape will be able to observe every point on Kerbin as Kerbin rotates.

Reference Frames

Time warp Minimum Altitude
Any
5× 5 000 m
10× 5 000 m
50× 10 000 m
100× 25 000 m
1 000× 50 000 m
10 000× 100 000 m
100 000× 200 000 m


Gallery

Spoiler: Screenshots of easter eggs

Trivia

  • Prior to version 0.14.2, the tallest points on the munar surface were no higher than roughly 600m.
  • Mun was Kerbin's, and indeed the game's, very first moon.
  • After its implementation, many fans began calling the body Mün, pronounced the same as "moon", believing the original spelling to be a mistake. However, several of the game's developers have been heard referring to it as Mun, pronounced "muhn". In the "Surface of the Mün" title screen, a crashed lander has the words "Mün or Bust" scrawled on the side. Both spellings are generally accepted, however the spelling in-game is Mun.
  • Mun's orbit is perfectly circular and has zero orbital inclination. Such an orbit in reality would be impossible since this would require precise positioning of any dust/bodies that created it during the planetary system's formation, as well as the absence of a central star or other planets.

Changes

0.20
  • Terrain overhaul
0.18
  • Easter Eggs added (one fixed, one added)
  • New small art pass.
0.17
  • Texture Improvements
0.16
  • Easter Eggs added
0.15
  • Texture Improvements
0.14.2
  • Terrain overhaul
0.12
  • Initial Release

Notes