13 November 2009
Announcements - Habitat (None)
The Day the Moon Changed
Water found under the surface of the Moon
by G B Leatherwood
November 13, 2009, is the day the Moon changed—or at least, our perception of it did.

That is the day the two-ton Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS), traveling at 5600 mph, crashed into the Moon. Some observers, eyes glued to telescope eyepieces, were disappointed to not observe a plume spraying from the depths of Cabeus, a crater 60 miles wide and 2 miles deep. But scientists later determined that a plume did rise. And further analysis confirmed that the plume was not only lunar regolith, but water.

Water. An estimated 25 gallons of it. Just under the surface of the Moon.

Peter Diamandis, Chairman and CEO of the X-Prize Foundation, in an article for The Huffington Post, titled “Most Valuable Real Estate in the Solar System,” wrote: “From an economic point of view, water on the Moon is the equivalent of finding ‘gold in the hills of California.’ Translation... there is the potential for a California gold rush to hit the space nations in the years ahead. It may be that governments and/or companies will seek to be first to the ice-fields of the Lunar South Pole and make a claim.”

Twenty-five gallons of water from one tiny pin-prick. Billions more to come?
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G B Leatherwood 13 November 2009
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