NASA finds water on the moon
On Monday (10/26), a group of NASA researchers announced the detection of water molecules on the surface of the Moon. That is, water on the Moon. Thus, this is the first time that the information is confirmed in a " unequivocal ", as stated by the researchers.
Astronomers have long claimed that there is strong evidence for the presence of H2o on the lunar surface. However, this hypothesis had never been effectively confirmed. Thus, the announcement can put much of what we know about the satellite into play. In this sense, the recent announcement indicates a greater abundance of water on Earth's natural satellite. In addition to being great news for possible signs of life outside our planet, this information can also help astronauts in the future.
The existence of water on the Moon may help future astronauts
According to NASA astronomers , the discovery was made using the SOFIA telescope ("Stratospheric Observatory of Infrared Astronomy", in the Portuguese translation), installed in a NASA Boeing 747 and which functions as an aerial observatory. That said, the water signs were found in the Crater Clavius, a particularly hot region of the Moon.
According to the researchers, who are led by Casey Honniball, from the University of Hawaii, it is speculated that the lunar water is trapped in crystals or just below the surface. In this way, the water would be protected by sand. Soon, this would happen so that the water does not evaporate in the place, point out the astronomers. In any case, it is confirmed that there is water in greater abundance at the poles of the Moon . Thus, it is likely that, in addition to being in these regions, lunar water can also be found in darker places and difficult to access. Therefore, we had not made this discovery before.
Previous theories about water formation on Earth lose strength
With the warm and speculative news for the future, NASA ended up raising expectations for the Artemis program, the project that will take the first woman and the next man to the Moon in 2024. "This discovery challenges our understanding of the lunar surface and raises intriguing questions about resources relevant to deep space exploration, "says Paul Hertz, director of astrophysics at NASA Headquarters in Washington, USA.
Once we discover the existence of water on the Moon, the next step is to understand how water was formed on the Moon and on Earth. These new studies will analyze the beginnings of the Solar System , pointing out possible similarities and possible differences between the planet and its satellite. "Our results are more consistent with the existence of a mechanism that produces water by impact from pre-existing material on the Moon," says Casey Honnibal, an astronomer and research leader.
It is also worth remembering that this information belies a number of theories about the formation of water on Earth . Thus, studies that claim that water reached Earth through comets from the Solar System, end up losing strength. However, this is also an event for us to think that new information and studies will come, revealing more than we did not know until then. "Our results suggest that the water trapped at the poles is more widely distributed and more accessible to future missions than we previously imagined," says the study.