Updated: October 27, 2020 at 2:35:55 pm
NASA has announced that it has its stratospheric laboratory for the Infrared Astronomy (Sofia) Telescope Confirmed the presence of water For the first time on the lunar side of the moon, water can be distributed on the lunar surface and not just in cool, shady places.
The results of Sofia’s observations and impacts are published in two papers in the journal Nature Astronomy.
So what did Sofia discover?
The Sofia, a 2.5 m telescope jointly developed by NASA and the German Space Center, is the world’s largest flying observatory, flying on a Boeing 747-SP aircraft at an altitude of about 45,000 feet.
Telescope The SOFIA telescope (FORCAST) uses a dim object infrared camera that was able to capture specific wavelengths of water molecules on the lunar surface. These water molecules are found in one of the Moon’s largest craters, located in its southern hemisphere, which is called Clavius from Earth. So far, previous observations have found some compounds of hydrogen on the lunar surface, but those observations have not been able to distinguish between water and hydroxyl.
Data from Sophia’s observations reveal the presence of water at concentrations of 100-412 parts per million.
The amount of water found is small. NASA says the water level in the Sahara Desert is 100 times higher than what Sophia found on lunar soil.
Researchers suspect that the water in the crater may have been supplied by small meteorite impacts or by the contact of energetic particles emitted from the sun. When solar winds deliver hydrogen to the lunar surface, hydrogen may react with oxygen-bearing minerals in the soil to form hydroxyl. This hydroxyl can then be converted into water.
What is the significance of this discovery?
First, the discovery is important because it is the first time water has been present in the sunlight area of the moon. This indicates that water may be distributed across the lunar surface. Second, although the amount of water found is a small amount, it raises the question of how water is created, stored, and persists on a rough airless surface such as the moon.
Furthermore, NASA says that learning more about water on the moon could support long-term exploration under its Artemis lunar exploration program, as part of which NASA wants to send the next order and the first woman to the moon by 2024. This is because scientists are able to use the resources available on the moon, which allows them to carry less water with them, and carry additional devices that enable scientific discoveries.
Significantly, water is an important ingredient for life. “⁇. We see water and life on Earth almost everywhere, ”NASA said earlier. 📣 Follow the express described in the telegram
News: We have confirmed water for the first time on the surface of the moon’s sunlight OSOFIAtelescope. We do not know if this can be used as a resource, but it is important for us to know about the water on the moon #Artemis Study projects. Join Media Telecon at https://t.co/vOGoSHt74c pic.twitter.com/7p2QopMhod
– Jim Bridenstein (im Zimbridenstein) October 26, 2020
So how is water stored on the lunar surface?
Scientists point out that because the moon does not have a dense atmosphere, water in sunlight must be lost to space. So, Sofia’s observations are surprising. “Something creates water, something has to trap it there,” Casey Honnipal, lead author of one study, said in a NASA report.
For now, scientists believe the water on the lunar surface may be trapped in small bead-like structures in the soil that form as a result of high thermal meteorite impacts or hidden between the grains of the lunar soil. It is from sunlight, and it is more accessible than stored in bead-like structures.
Where has water been found on the moon before?
Prior to Sofia’s observations, Honnipal said in the statement that “we know there is some kind of hydration.” But it is not clear if any part of this hydration was water molecules, “as we drink every day”.
In 1969, when astronauts returned from the moon after the first Apollo mission, the surface was found to be “completely dry”. But over the past 20 years, missions have confirmed the presence of water ice in dark, permanently shaded craters around the Moon’s poles. Therefore, the discovery of water in the sunlight areas of the moon is particularly puzzling to scientists.
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