Moon has a surprising amount of water, meteorite impacts reveal

The surface of the moon is thought to be a dusty sort of place. Water is hidden in the lunar subsoil in significant abundance. According to the report in the journal Nature Geoscience, a spacecraft is sent to lunar space to study the atmosphere of the moon by NASA, found even tiny impacts release water. It is estimated that about 220 tons of water are released in a year. The amount of water traced in the moon has surprised the scientists, as the moon is far wetter than the scientists ever imagined. The spacecraft, which is sent to the space to study lunar dust, has detected the release of water when the meteors collide with the surface.

The data collected from the new study indicates that the moon is not a desolate place. Instead, it is very responsive and active. The concerned study leader, planetary scientist- Mehdi Benna at NASA’s Goddard space flight center has revealed some interesting facts about the study. Many of the instruments in the spacecraft are like a sponge, so the devices soak water when moving in the atmosphere of space. Some unknown factors are found when the instruments are turned on, says Benna.

There was a hint that the moon has surface water earlier in 2009. The Indian lunar probe Chandrayaan-1 has detected the fact, but the source of water was not known. It was believed that the water might be deposited there by passing meteoroids or solar wind. The current study suggests that the surface water was always there on the moon. NASA’s lunar atmosphere and dust environment explorer (LADEE) has circled the moon in the year 2013 and 2014. LADEE has taken readings of the moon’s atmosphere by using the neutral mass spectrometer. LADEE has detected a positive sign of water in its 736 readings.

The current facts, which are detected, will help in future missions and these clues are very useful in understanding the formation of the moon. LADEE had seen meteor showers as in the earth when LADEE was in the orbit of the moon. Twenty-nine streams of meteors are found, and the streams are linked to the comet, says Benna. Like a rain of small impactors, each stream consists of millions of particle. When the particles collide with the surface, then it releases water by picking up the delicate top layer of soil. There is much water on the surface of the moon that was expected previously. Below a few centimeters of the soil, there is much water available in the moon. The source of water on the surface of the moon is believed to be a water reservoir that is depleted over time is there. The source of water is not found yet, but it is the surface water on the moon. The fact that there is the existence of water on the moon was known earlier, but this much water is surprising for the team of scientists, says Benna. The study shows, the moon always has abundant water in its surface. There is much more exist on the surface of the moon based on the data by the delivery system. The factors are to be studied by the team.

About Staff Reporter 275 Articles
Huey Freeman, who has recently been serving as executive editor of Arizona Daily Independent, previously worked as a reporter for daily newspapers in Central Illinois. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and has been an adjunct professor at Millikin University and Eastern Illinois University. An author of two published books, he is working on two books on the southern border. Huey is married, with four adult children.