NASA and Indian scientists have detected evidence of water from the moon’s interior in Bullialdus Crater. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University

New evidence confirms water on the Moon. It is the NASA Moon Mineralogy Mapper instrument carried on India’s Chandrayaan-1 probe that has made the discovery. This new data provides compelling evidence and confirms what has already been observed previously by other instruments just recently, and also those analyses performed by the Apollo astronauts several decades ago.

Published in the journal Nature Geoscience, the report provides evidence for water that seems to originate from an unknown source deep in the lunar interior. The Indian probe detected higher amounts of hydroxyl. This molecule consists of one atom of oxygen and one of hydrogen, compared to water that has one oxygen atom and two hydrogen atoms, as you know. It found this hydroxyl at a large impact crater. And this is evidence of what could be water that originated beneath the lunar surface.

The belief now is that many craters on the moon do harbor large amounts of water ice. Water that may become useful in the future, for astronauts on the Moon, or if would ever establish a future base on the Moon. Finding resources on the Moon would much contribute using the Moon as a bridgehead for future exploration and establishment in the solar system.

Chandrayaan-1 was India’s first robotic moon probe. Launched in October 2008 it observed the Luna surface from orbit. It also sent an impactor into the lunar surface a month later, when India became the fourth nation to plant its flag on the moon. It stopped communicating with Earth in August 2009.
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