The prevailing conjecture was that if there is water on the surface, then it is probably in the form of ice near the poles and deep craters in the interior, into which the sun does not penetrate. The new data suggest, however, that in addition there could be an extremely thin film of water on the entire surface. Although the probes also found stronger oxygen-hydrogen signals near the poles and in fresh craters, other areas also had measurable signal strengths. Initial projections by one of the teams suggest that in some regions, the amount of water could be up to half a percent by weight of the rock? provided that the signals actually come from water and not from so-called hydroxyl radicals, extremely reactive particles of a hydrogen and an oxygen atom.
The source of hydrogen-oxygen compounds could be the impact of comets or other bodies of water on the lunar surface. However, researchers find it much more likely that the water or hydroxyl is constantly being replicated on the surface? presumably when positively charged hydrogen ions from the solar wind react with the oxygen on the lunar rock. The resulting compound then appears to migrate towards the colder poles and accumulate there.Carle Pieters (Brown University, Providence) et al .: Science, Online Preliminary Publications, doi: 10.1126 / science.1178658 Roger Clark (US Geological Survey): Science, Online Preliminary Publications, doi: 10.1126 / science.1178105 Jessica M. Sunshine (University of Maryland, College Park) et al .: Science, Online Pre-Publications, doi: 10.1126 / science.1179788 ddp / science.de - Ilka Lehnen-Beyel advertisement