NASA orbiter spots water 'moving' across the surface of the moon

NASA-Administrator-Jim-Bridenstine-afp

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine | AFP

The Lyman Alpha Mapping Project (LAMP) measurements helped the scientists see the changes in the lunar hydration.

NASA is pushing for a sustainable moon program this time around, as opposed to the come-and-go Apollo lunar landings a half-century ago. "So these are great days". This water is more common at higher latitudes and tends to hop around as the surface heats up.

As the temperature on the surface of the Moon increases, water is said to "bounce" around.

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The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) measured the sparse layer of molecules stuck to the surface over the course of the day - and spotted how it "hops" around across the surface.

Then, molecules thermally desorb and can bounce to a nearby location that is cold enough for the molecule to stick or populate the Moon's extremely tenuous atmosphere or exosphere, until temperatures drop and the molecules return to the surface. That mission which would carry astronauts around the moon. Lunar water would also be useful for humans especially in thermal management or radiation shielding.

Up until the last decade, planetary scientists thought the Moon was arid, with any water existing mainly as pockets of ice in permanently shaded craters near the lunar poles. "And we're looking forward to the first woman on the Moon".

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It's a huge step for women in regards to their placement at NASA, because the first female astronauts were introduced in 1968 (a year before Armstrong stood on the Moon), and still, there haven't been women on the Moon or making a big exploration by themselves.

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"By studying these precious lunar samples for the first time, a new generation of scientists will help advance our understanding of our lunar neighbor and prepare for the next era of exploration of the Moon and beyond, " said Thomas Zurbuchen, Associate Administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, in a statement. Expedition 59 - scheduled for March 29 - includes astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch, aided on the ground by flight directors Mary Lawrence and Kristen Facciol at NASA's Mission Control at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

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