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Space & Astronomy

Water ice detected on the surface of the Moon

By T.K. Randall
August 21, 2018 · Comment icon 33 comments

Ice deposits on the Moon could supply a base with water, fuel and oxygen. Image Credit: NASA
The ice deposits could prove to be an important resource for astronauts setting up a manned outpost in the future.
Discovered at both the Moon's north and south polar regions, the ice was detected via the Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) instrument on India's Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft.

It is concentrated mainly within craters at the south pole but is more spread out at the north pole.

Temperatures on the Moon can reach up to 100 degrees Celsius during the daytime, which would seem to make the presence of ice deposits impossible, however due to the Moon's tilt there are certain areas at the poles that remain permanently shadowed.
There had been indications of water ice at the Moon's south pole before, however it had been impossible to tell for sure as scientists could not rule out the reflectivity of the lunar soil.

Now that it is confirmed, it seems that the Moon may be the ideal place for a manned outpost.

"With enough ice sitting at the surface - within the top few millimeters - water would possibly be accessible as a resource for future expeditions to explore and even stay on the moon, and potentially easier to access than the water detected beneath the moon's surface," NASA wrote.

Source: BBC News | Comments (33)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #24 Posted by taniwha 4 years ago
Now you got me wondering if the sun strikes the ice at just the right angle ... Nah, we wouldn't see rainbows would we?   Sorry I've been up too late....
Comment icon #25 Posted by lightly 4 years ago
Thanks Astra,......ya, out in space away from planets.        (I warned y’all it might be a stupid question)    i assume there probably is water vapor in the atmospheres of Some planets. .....other than ours.
Comment icon #26 Posted by XenoFish 4 years ago
If the planet has water and near enough to its sun, I'm sure it rains. Maybe those planets have a similar seasonal pattern.  Correct me if I'm wrong folks.
Comment icon #27 Posted by Noteverythingisaconspiracy 4 years ago
Mars have water vapour in its atmosphere, not very much though.  Edit: Venus have a little water vapour too, but it interacts with the atmosphere, producing sulphuric acid. Venus is not a pleasant place at all. 
Comment icon #28 Posted by lightly 4 years ago
Thanks Not,......ya, I was just thinking about a water molecule IN SPACE....far away from any planet. i know there are Icey objects in space...( comets, objects in the Van Allen belt....etc.). .I guess space is too cold for liquid water to exist in? ....  But ,under certain conditions....In Sunlight...I'm wondering if ice might melt.....or if steam could happen....or condensation .... i used to think that steam might dissipate ...and the water molecules might break up into hydrogen and oxygen atoms....but I Guess  that is never the case ?   (Without ionization) ......I dunno...just thinking,..... [More]
Comment icon #29 Posted by Astra. 4 years ago
No lightly, it's not a stupid question at all. In fact I learnt something that I had no idea about because of your query. I found this interesting article where a water vapor cloud does actually exist in outer space and not only on some planets where we have already discovered water / or signs of (mainly in the form of water ice). There is possibly even more of these massive vapor clouds in other regions of deeper-outer-space that we have not discovered yet. 
Comment icon #30 Posted by Astra. 4 years ago
@lightly...some more info from NASA.
Comment icon #31 Posted by lightly 4 years ago
Wow. !   ....thanks a Lot Astra...we both learned something extremely interesting !
Comment icon #32 Posted by Astra. 4 years ago
Comment icon #33 Posted by TripGun 4 years ago
$10K a bottle, get your pre-orders ready.

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