Jun 19, 2019 | Updated: 09:31 AM EDT

Water Found In The Moon After Meteoroid Strike

Apr 22, 2019 02:29 PM EDT

Moon Surface
(Photo : https://pixabay.com/illustrations/moon-planet-space-astronomy-1303512/)

There is water in the moon and it's hidden just below its surface. The depths where the water was found were too shallow it would be easy enough access, according to the report recently released by NASA.

Small scale meteoroid strikes are almost constantly hitting the surface of the moon. They were found to be getting into the deeper part than just the surface of the moon. The strikes have been infusing the lunar atmosphere with what experts call short-lived water vapor.

Every time the tiny rocks hit the moon, they loosen up the surface matter all while its shockwaves liberate the stream of water from the hydrated layer of the moon just a little below the surface.

These recent findings are providing support to further the hypothesis that there is indeed water reserves in the moon. This also shows that these water reserves come from the ancient times and that they are accessible only meters below the surface.

The Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer of NASA called the LADEE craft, has orbited the moon between October of 2013 up to October of 2014. The scientists collected data about the exosphere or what they call the faint gases present in the atmosphere. The scientists found that whenever the meteoroids hit the surface, apart from the dust particles that go into the atmosphere, there are also small droplets of water that comes on the surface.

"We traced these events, the meteoroid showers in the atmosphere, but it is not what surprised us. In our observation, we also found evidence of four other meteoroid streams previously undiscovered by previous studies," said Mehdi Benna, lead author of the study that was published in  the journal Nature Geosciences.

He is the head of the Goddard Space Flight Center of NASA from the University of Maryland. "The lost water that was recently discovered must be ancient. It is either they date back to the formation of the moon. Or perhaps it has been deposited there during the ancient times in history," he added.

Dr. Benna told the New Scientist that, "the process is like cleaning a huge rug by hitting it with a stick. Every time the stick hits it, a puff of smoke comes out. It is the shock wave from when you hit the stick that makes all the dust come out."

To get to the layer of water, the meteoroids had to go as deep as 3 inches below the surface, according to the report released by NASA.

Underneath the layer of stones and dust comes a thin layer of water. The researchers were able to calculate that the water concentration of about 500 parts per million or about 0.05 per cent by weight. This concentration can be likened to the driest soils of the Earth and such results are consistent with the results of previous studies.

"We know that this water may come from the moon and this should tell us something," said Dana Hurley of the Hopkins University, the second author to the study.

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