The Mystery of the Lunar Transient Phenomena

An exploration of the transient lunar phenomena, strange brightening, darkening and discolorations on the surface of the moon observed by professional astronomers.

transient lunar phenomenon (TLP) or lunar transient phenomenon (LTP) is a short-lived light, color or change in appearance on the surface of the Moon. The term was created by Patrick Moore in his co-authorship of NASA Technical Report R-277 Chronological Catalog of Reported Lunar Events, published in 1968.

Claims of short-lived lunar phenomena go back at least 1,000 years, with some having been observed independently by multiple witnesses or reputable scientists. Nevertheless, the majority of transient lunar phenomenon reports are irreproducible and do not possess adequate control experiments that could be used to distinguish among alternative hypotheses to explain their origins.

Most lunar scientists will acknowledge transient events such as outgassing and impact cratering do occur over geologic time. The controversy lies in the frequency of such events.