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The Once and Future Moon

Signs of “Life” on the Lunar Frontier

5 Sep 2013, 16:06 UTC
Signs of “Life” on the Lunar Frontier
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

New sightings of water on the Moon, roadmaps for exploration and commercial lunar flights.

The lunar crater Bullialdus (20.7° S, 22.2° W; 60 km diameter), with water-bearing minerals identified in the central peaks. Clementine false-color composite over LRO lunar basemap.
Generally speaking, I hate “mop up” posts wherein stories, anecdotes, factoids and announcements are lumped together solely for the purpose of clearing the writer’s desk. But that’s what I have here, so let’s get on with it.
Despite being written off by many as a dead letter topic, the Moon (an object of scientific and commercial interest and utility) continues to confound experts and frustrate naysayers.
You may have recently learned about yet another discovery of lunar water. The “new” this time around is that we have apparently succeeded in identifying a form of hydration (i.e., the OH molecule) present in mineral structures in the central peak of the mid-latitude crater Bullialdus (20.7° S, 22.2° W; 60 km diameter). Past identifications of lunar water involve either the polar dark regions or high-latitude, solar wind implanted OH and H2O molecules. We’ve known about water-bearing minerals in the lunar samples for the past couple of years, but this is the first time ...

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