Newswise — On the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing, Baylor University planetary geophysicist is collaborating with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center to analyze spacecraft data of the planet closest to the Sun.

Peter James, Ph.D., founder of Baylor University’s Planetary Research Group, has taken part in three NASA missions and specializes in using of spacecraft data to study the crusts and mantles of planets and moons.

“The ultimate aim of using geophysical techniques to explore the structure and inner workings of rocky planets in our solar system is to understand how Earth-like planets form and evolve,” said James, assistant professor of planetary geophysics in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences.

James led a recent study which found a mysterious huge mass of material on the far side of the Moon — beneath the largest crater in our solar system. The mass — at least five times larger than the Big Island of Hawaii — may contain metal from an asteroid that may have crashed into the Moon and formed the crater.

That study -- ”Deep Structure of the Lunar South Pole-Aitken Basin” — was published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. 

James bio: