There is now hope that humans can survive on the moon after the National Aeronautics and Space Administration discovered water there.
According to a report by Dailymail, NASA revealed that tiny pockets of ice on the lunar surface could provide enough oxygen, hydration and rocket fuel to support a human colony.
Study estimates up to 40,000 square km of water hidden in cold traps in craters
NASA has confirmed, for the first time, that there is water on the sunlit surface of the moon.
The revelation means it is possible water is easily accessible and not just in the deep, permanently shadowed craters of the south pole, as was previously thought.
A separate piece of research found these so-called ‘cold traps’, which are always in shadow, may contain up to 15,000 square miles (40,000 square km) of water.
The discovery means future missions to the moon could be prolonged by making use of these water molecules which are scattered across the moon.
Astronauts could use the natural resource, which may have arrived via comets or solar winds, and turn it into oxygen or drinking water to sustain a future colony.
Scientists also say the water could be used to make rocket fuel, lightening missions and slashing mission costs to make interplanetary space travel easier and cheaper.
Previously, researchers speculated water was only present in cold traps and were unable to prove it was water and not a similar molecule called hydroxyl, which is found in drain cleaner.
The NASA research used a converted Boeing 747 that cruises around Earth above the clouds at an altitude of more than 41,000ft called Sofia.
It was tasked with clarifying findings published in 2009 which discovered molecular hydrogen and oxygen on the surface of the moon.
However, due to the nature of the decade-old analysis, astronomers were unable to say whether or not it was water (H20) or hydroxyl (OH) compounds, the chemical found in drain cleaner, due to the similarity in their chemical signature.
Dr Nick Tothill, a physicist at Western Sydney University, who was not involved in the research, said: ‘The problem was that the water ice signature that was found before was really just telling us that there were oxygen and hydrogen atoms bound together.
‘On the Earth, this is mainly water, but on the Moon, you can’t be so sure.’
The issue was a limitation of the equipment that used a wavelength of three micrometres, which is unable to tell apart hydroxyl minerals from water.
Sofia, short for Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, is equipped with a unique six micrometre sensor that detects ‘a fundamental vibration of molecular water’ that is completely unique to water.
The Sofia study found the water molecules in Clavius Crater, one of the largest craters visible from Earth, located in the Moon’s southern hemisphere.
By detecting this, it is conclusive and indubitable proof of water on the sunlit surface of the moon, NASA says.
‘We had indications that H2O – the familiar water we know – might be present on the sunlit side of the Moon,’ said Paul Hertz, director of the Astrophysics Division in the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington.
‘Now we know it is there. This discovery challenges our understanding of the lunar surface and raises intriguing questions about resources relevant for deep space exploration.’
Dr Themiya Nanayakkara, an astronomer at Swinburne University of Technology, comments on the research.
‘Honniball and collaborators have now targeted a much higher wavelength feature at 6µm using data from the SOFIA observatory,’ he says.
He goes on to explain that Sofia is a modified Boeing 747 with a massive hole that fits in a 2.5-meter mirror.
‘They find spectral signatures that can only be explained by molecular water on the Moon,’ he says.
In the paper, published in the journal Nature Astronomy, the researchers say that water around the south pole of the moon is relatively abundant, at around 100 to 400 parts per million, equivalent to a 12-ounce (360ml) bottle of water – trapped in a cubic meter of soil.
This is about 100 times drier than the Sahara desert, NASA says.
‘We haven’t found a fountain or lake on the moon, the water density is very low, it is confined to the poles, and is likely trapped in glasses or rocks on the surface,’ warns Dr Ben Montet from the University of New South Wales.
The second scientific paper released today looks at where water is most likely to be found on the moon’s surface.
It adds to previous research which found that cold traps are well suited for preserving water ice.
Also known as topographic depressions, they benefit from a quirk of the moon’s physics, which is also a feature of Mercury and the asteroid Ceres.
All three are tilted on their axis and as a result the shadow created from their craters leaves some areas permanently in the shade.
In these areas, temperatures can plummet as low as -163.15°C/-261.67°F due to the lack of sunlight, hence the frigid moniker assigned by astronomers.
Dr Paul Hayne from the University of Colorado, Boulder led a project that tried to determine just how many of these there are and how much water they may contain.
His team used theoretical modelling and data from the Lunar Renaissance Orbiter (LRO) to piece this puzzle together.
They vary enormously in size, the researchers say, with some as large as one kilometre in diameter and some just one centimetre in width.
Up to a fifth of all water ice believed to be trapped in these spots is thought to be in the tiniest of the craters, the researchers say.
More than half (60 per cent) of the cold traps are in the south and the majority are at latitudes in excess of 80 degrees because ‘permanent shadows equatorward of 80° are typically too warm to support ice accumulation’, the researchers write.
In total, they speculate up to 40,000 square kilometres of water ice exists in the cold traps, the same as twice the contents of Lake Ontario.
Dr Tothill says: ‘Taken together, these papers tell us that there really is water ice on the moon, and it’s probably widespread over both polar regions – with a bit more in the south.
‘This in turn tells us how and where to look for water on the moon, with either robot or human explorers.’
While this research confirms long-held theories, astronomers have been acting on these suspicions for a long time.
NASA, for example, banked on finding water and plans to build a base camp at the moon’s south pole. Israel’s failed Beresheet mission also had a similar thought process.
Before a crash landing, it had intended to touch down in the lowland area of Mare Serenitatis. This area gave off a distinct signal indicating water is present there.
Thousands of dried tardigrades were secretly sent on this mission and these creatures are known as being the hardiest creatures in the world.
They can be revived by water, survive UV rays and Israel hoped to see if they would survive on the moon.
‘But we don’t have to worry that tardigrades are now running around the Moon,’ says Alice Gorman of Flinders University, a leading space archaeologist.
‘They’re encased in resin, and the water is most likely trapped inside glasses formed by micrometeorite impacts.’
The discovery, which was tantalisingly teased by NASA last week, has significant implications for future space missions to our natural satellite.
Dr Jonti Horner from the University of Southern Queensland calls the research ‘definitely exciting’.
He says future missions to the south pole of the moon could be refuelled at a base camp, as proposed by the NASA Artemis mission, using the moonwater.
But the implications are far more significant than that, experts say.
Instead of simply refuelling and returning to Earth, the presence of moonwater , and therefore lower costs for return trips, also open the door for interplanetary missions.
‘To launch a litre bottle of water from Earth to the Moon costs $35,000 – almost the same cost as if we just made that bottle solid gold, says Professor Alan Duffy, lead scientist of The Royal Institution of Australia.
‘But by accessing it directly from the Moon itself we turn our celestial neighbour into a resupply as well as a refuelling station.
‘Water can directly support astronauts on a planned Moon-base, used to grow food on long-duration missions to Mars, and even split into literal rocket fuel for powering our satellites and rockets across the Solar System. ‘
I Am Angry, I Am Sad, I Am Pissed – Sam George Weeps Bitterly As He shares His Sad Story
Yesterday evening around 8pm, I got a call and messages from an Assemblyman in my Constituency whilst I was at church that his 12 year old son had been rushed to the Battor Catholic hospital in the morning. The situation had been deteriorating and a decision was made early afternoon to transfer the child to Accra.
Calls were made to Korle Bu Teaching Hospital but they refused to accept the child that there was no bed. Calls were made to 37 Military Hospital and they agreed to take the child. This was about 3pm. Then the next hurdle began. The National Ambulance Service was called to transport the child. Getting the Service was another issue entirely. After getting the service, they insisted that they cannot move the child until they got their own independent confirmation from 37 Military Hospital. For well over 5 hours, they could not get anyone from 37 to confirm.
It was at this point the Assemblyman in desperation called me. I quickly reached out to my Colleague and Brother Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa who is the MP for the area to see if he could intervene with the Battor Clinic. He immediately called Dr. Atuguba who is the Head of the facility and put me in touch with him. It became clear quickly that Battor had done all they could and it was in the hands of 37 Military Hospital.
Hon. Ablakwa again called a Constituent of his who is a doctor at 37 to see if he could help us. At this point we had finally gotten an ambulance on standby to convey the child. By the time we got a Doctor at 37 to get involved and give the all clear to the ambulance service, the little boy blacked out and could not be resuscitated. He died at 10:05pm.
Why it would have to take 2 MPs to find a bed for a dying child who needed critical medical care has deprived me of sleep. Why we have ambulances that cannot move because there is no system in place to let them know where to go anger me. Why we have a world-class facility like the University of Ghana Medical Centre with so many empty beds rotting away beats my understanding.
Yet another needless death. Should you know a big man somewhere for you to get the basic necessities? This death has really pained me. It has left me bitter at the system. It has left me angry at the #FixYourself folks. How could the Assemblyman or his 12 year old fix this issue?
The Republic is indeed very sick and needs to be fixed. How much longer can we go on like this. May the soul of this little child whose only crime is to be born Ghanaian rest in the bossom of the LORD.
Reasons Why Sammy Gyamfi Ignored NPP To Join NDC Finally Revealed – Full Details
He was born on March 28, 1989. Sammy is from Sunyani in Ghana’s Bono Region, but he has spent almost his entire life in Kumasi.
He attended Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), where he was very active in politics.
Sammy was always around members of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) at KNUST’s Unity hall until he experienced discrimination and intolerance from members of the TESCON group. As a result, he found the NPP unappealing.
He then became a member of the NDC tertiary group TEIN. Sammy won the hearts of several TEIN-NDC KNUST members due to his outspokenness, intelligence, and in-depth political knowledge. He was highly hailed by all.
Sammy Gyamfi rose to become the President of TEIN-NDC KNUST between 2011-2012. His name was known throughout the Ashanti region, prompting the then-Mayor of Kumasi, Mr. Kojo Bonsu, to appoint him as the spokesperson and public relations officer for the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) between 2012-2016.
Get A New or Replaced NHIS Card By Doing The Following
The Ghanaian government established the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) in 2003. The program is a type of national health insurance that was established to provide Ghanaians with equitable access and financial coverage for basic health care services.
Former President John Agyekum Kuffour’s name will live on in history as the president who brought Ghana’s dream to fruition.
If a person’s NHIS card is lost, he or she must go to one of the organization’s regional or district offices.
When a Ghanaian loses his or her NHIS card or wants to make a new one, he or she can replace it by doing the following.
For new or replacement of your card:
- Contact the district office or NHIS agent at NHIS Office in your district.
- Fill a new applicant form or replacement form and pay the processing fee where applicable.
- You will be issued a new ID card.
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