A huge achievement has been made as NASA has discovered water on the sunlit surface of the Moon. Making the observation from the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), the groundbreaking discovery has confirmed what the agency has always suspected.
The Clavius Crater, which is one of the largest observable craters on the Moon’s surface, was where the water was discovered. About 12-ounces of water was trapped inside a cubic meter of soil. Per NASA, the Sahara desert has 100 times more water than what SOFIA found.
We had indications that H2O – the familiar water we know – might be present on the sunlit side of the Moon. Now we know it is there. This discovery challenges our understanding of the lunar surface and raises intriguing questions about resources relevant for deep space exploration.Paul Hertz, NASA director of the Astrophysics Division in the Science Mission Directorate in Washington
Water is a valuable resource, for both scientific purposes and for use by our explorers. If we can use the resources at the Moon, then we can carry less water and more equipment to help enable new scientific discoveries.Jacob Bleacher, chief exploration scientist for NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate