NASA Finds Water On The MoonNASA said its bombardment of the moon's surface has discovered beds of water ice at the lunar south pole. "Indeed, yes, we found water. And we didn't find just a little bit, we found a
NASA said its bombardment of the moon's surface has discovered beds of water ice at the lunar south pole.
"Indeed, yes, we found water. And we didn't find just a little bit, we found a significant amount," Anthony Colaprete, LCROSS project scientist and principal investigator from NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California, said.
NASA's LCROSS probe impacted the lunar south pole at a crater called Cabeus on Octtober nine.
The USD 79 million spacecraft, preceded by its Centaur rocket stage, hit the lunar surface in an effort to create a debris plume that could be analyzed by scientists for signs of water ice.
"The argument that the moon is a dry, desolate place no longer holds water. Secrets the moon has been holding, for perhaps billions of years, are now being revealed to the delight of scientists and space enthusiasts alike," the space agency said in a statement.
"Preliminary data from the Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite, or LCROSS, indicates that the mission successfully uncovered water during the Oct. 9, 2009 impacts into the permanently shadowed region of Cabeus cater near the moon's south pole," it said.
The impact created by the LCROSS Centaur upper stage rocket created a two-part plume of material from the bottom of the crater.
The first part was a high angle plume of vapor and fine dust and the second a lower angle ejecta curtain of heavier material.
"This material has not seen sunlight in billions of years," the NASA said.
"We're unlocking the mysteries of our nearest neighbor and by extension the solar system. It turns out the moon harbors many secrets, and LCROSS has added a new layer to our understanding," said Michael Wargo, chief lunar scientist at NASA Headquarters in Washington.
ISRO scientists had in September announced that India's maiden moon mission Chandrayaan-I has detected evidence of water across the lunar surface.
Moon Mineralogy Mapper, a NASA instrument onboard Chandrayaan-I, detected wavelengths of reflected light that would indicate a chemical bond between hydrogen and oxygen in materials on the thin layer of upper soil. PTI