Home Science Space NASA says Moon has more water than Great Lakes

A NASA-funded study of the Moon has determined that its interior holds more water than all of the water contained in the Great Lakes (on the border of Canada and U.S.A.) does here on Earth. And, that water is indigenous to the Moon.

 


According to the June 14, 2010 NASA media brief Research Suggests Water Content Of Moon Interior Underestimated, 'Scientists at the Carnegie Institution's Geophysical Laboratory in Washington, along with other scientists across the nation, determined that the water was likely present very early in the moon's formation history as hot magma started to cool and crystallize. This finding means water is native to the moon.'

Although a simple, short sentence 'This finding means water is native to the moon,' the sentence is very important to the history of the Moon. This water, for the most part, did not come from impacts with asteroids, comets, and other celestial bodies. It was a part of the Moon when it first formed.

Francis McCubbin, the lead author of the study, stated, 'For over 40 years we thought the moon was dry. In our study we looked at hydroxyl, a compound with an oxygen atom bound with hydrogen, and apatite, a water-bearing mineral in the assemblage of minerals we examined in two Apollo samples and a lunar meteorite."

The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Their PNAS article is entitled 'Nominally hydrous magmatism on the Moon.'

They state in the abstract to the paper: 'For the past 40 years, the Moon has been described as nearly devoid of indigenous water; however, evidence for water both on the lunar surface and within the lunar interior have recently emerged, calling into question this long-standing lunar dogma.'

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William Atkins

William Atkins completed educational degrees in science (bachelor’s in physics and mathematics) from Illinois State University (Normal, United States) and business (master’s in entrepreneurship and bachelor’s in industrial relations) from Western Illinois University

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