Scientists say Moon could be holding more water than previously thought

Ruben Fields
October 27, 2020

Whole the discovery raised new questions and debates on how water is created and how it persists on harsh lunar conditions, many on social media celebrated the announcement with memes and jokes. "It's just the water molecules - because they're so spread out they don't interact with each other to form water ice or even liquid water", Honniball said.

Although you won't be packing your Speedos and towel for a day on the lunar seas anytime soon, the pair of studies demonstrate the moon is more damp than we once believed and highlight the potential to utilize lunar resources in human and robotic exploration.

We know it's water because water molecules - two hydrogen atoms bound to an oxygen atom - give off a signal at a specific wavelength that can't be mistaken for anything else.

Earth news is a bit anxiety-provoking these days, which might be one reason why the Internet pulled out all the stops to communicate collective enthusiasm over the discovery of vast amounts of water on the moon. Interesting questions about resources related to distant space exploration. Flying at altitudes of up to 45,000 feet, this modified Boeing 747SP jetliner with a 106-inch diameter telescope reaches above 99% of the water vapor in Earth's atmosphere to get a clearer view of the infrared universe.

There's more to this mission, however, than just agua - NASA says not only are they going to study the water, but the USA will also try to establish a long-term presence on the moon by the end of the decade, so they can springboard to the next planet on their radar. These cold traps are places where the sun doesn't shine - literally, never - and are "hundreds to thousands of times" more numerous than large scale cold traps.

Clavius is one of the largest crater formations on the Moon and the second-largest crater on the visible near side.

However, the new study report strongly suggests that there is molecular water on the moon, even in sunlit areas.

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The deluge of wet weather could also lead to minor river and flash flooding, according to the National Hurricane Center. Tropical Storm Zeta rapidly strengthened overnight and is forecast to turn into a Category 1 hurricane sometime Monday.

"Being able to use water that is already at the moon would be a big help for us in exploring the Moon".

For the first time, water is confirmed present on a sunward-facing surface of the moon, explained Paul Hertz, astrophysics division director at NASA Headquarters, Washington.

This illustration highlights Clavius Crater on the Moon with an illustration depicting water trapped in the lunar soil there, along with an image of SOFIA. Yet somehow, we see it.

Meanwhile, radiation from the bombardment of micrometeorites could be transforming that hydroxyl into water, Nasa said.

Nasa's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (Sofia) has detected water molecules (H2O) in a crater located on the Moon's southern hemisphere.

Using data from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, the researchers identified cold traps as small as a few yards across and as wide as 18 miles and more, and used computer models to get all the way down to micrometers in size. Follow-up flights by the aircraft will search for additional water signatures within sunlit portions of the Moon. Those collisions provide the heat to convert hydroxyl molecules to water molecules, but those molecules are then entrained within microscopically small glass beads also created by the collisions. So, the existence of "micro traps" could make future astronauts' lives much easier, if they do contain ice - something that the study has not confirmed so far.

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