Need to produce stunning images of the Moon but all you can find are old low-resolution textures on websites long forgotten by time, or a wild maze of links to scientific archives with horrific naming and obscure file extensions? Not to worry, I've done all of that for you and you can now just skip to the fun part of creating great visuals.
Creating planetary imagery is a strong passion of mine and to produce the best possible results you need the highest quality source material. I've poured countless hours into acquiring, processing and converting planetary maps into formats usable by artists, and that work has translated into what some may call ludicrous textures. I call it future proof.
The textures in this scene were mostly derived from the data gathered by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, a probe that has been orbiting our neighbour since 2009. It has provided us with terabytes worth of information and the work is still ongoing.
From this data I've produced very high quality textures of the entire Moon. The maximum resolution is ridiculously high at 92160 by 46080, which means the detail level is stunning and stands up to close scrutiny. Every crater, hill and plateau is represented in the map, creating an intricately detailed landscape you could easily admire for hours.
Please note that due to the nature of the projection the accuracy of the map is lower the closer you get to the poles. The resolution should still be more than sufficient for high quality closeups.
The scene file included was created with Maya 2016 and V-Ray 3.2, both of which you need in order to produce renders.