Ever since we discovered water on the Moon, scientists have been trying to figure out how much water is upon the lunar surface, and whether or not there would be enough to sustain not only colonists but perhaps a few rockets as well.
Now it looks like there may be “3 different flavors” of lunar water, which could help decide where future moon bases are established.
(Physorg.com) “If you converted those craters’ water into rocket fuel, you’d have enough fuel to launch the equivalent of one space shuttle per day for more than 2000 years. But our observations are just a part of an even more tantalizing story about what’s going on up on the Moon.” […]
“So far we’ve found three types of moonwater,” says Spudis. “We have Mini-SAR’s thick lenses of nearly pure crater ice, LCROSS’s fluffy mix of ice crystals and dirt, and M-cube’s thin layer that comes and goes all across the surface of the Moon.”
Although this still means that most of Luna is still drier than a terrestrial desert, the fact that many craters contain vast amounts of water ice means that future lunar outposts will become a reality in the near future.
While these “oasis craters” may spark debate about lunar property rights and perhaps some tension amongst the first lunar powers, their presence may signal that humanities first home beyond the sky will be upon our celestial next door neighbor.