Friday, September 25, 2009

Water on the Moon!

NASA scientists studying results from a NASA instrument on an Indian lunar probe, combined with overlapping data sets from different instruments on two earlier NASA probes, have declared the evidence is very solid for water on the Moon. Water is concentrated near the poles and scattered in molecules throughout the surface material (regolith). A ton of lunar soil would yield about a liter of water, so there's no sense tyring to live off it. Still, while this is not enough water to support a human outpost, it is evidence of processes taking place to maintain water on one of the least likely habitats imaginable.

Oh, and while we're at it: new evidence of more ice on Mars! (Where there might actually be enough to provide some support to a long-term stay by H. sapiens). We knew there was water there, but water ice exposed by meteor impacts at mid-latitudes expands the known resources of the Red Planet.

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