(from : http://www.france2.fr )

translated from french by Yves

The US probe " Lunar Orbiter " detected water (under its iced form) on the moon, more precisely on both poles of our satellite. This observation confirms an earlier report obtained by " Clementine " (a probe launched by the DOD) which also detected iced water at the lunar south pole.

The moon thus becomes the fourth celestial body on which water has been detected, after the Earth, Mars and Europe, one of the " moons " of Jupiter. Earth, named the " blue planet " after the presence of rivers, seas and oceans, would be, however, the only planet or satellite where water appears under its liquid form.

The water detected on the moon, at the bottom of craters located on both the north and south poles, appeared to be " mixed " with lunar dirt. This water may originate from the collision of our satellite with (a) meteorite(s), (an) event(s) which might have occurred ca. 3.6 billions years ago. On another hand, water would be hidden on Europa below the frozen surface of the Jovian moon.

Evidence for the presence of water on the moon opens new prospects for spatial exploration. The amount of water on the moon would be sufficient to fill a 10 km2 (4 square miles) lake up to 11 meters (almost 40 feet), stated the responsible of the lunar mission.This could allow a human colonization of our satellite and its use as an E.T. launch base for exploration missions towars Mars.

The second " Lunar Prospector " probe, the mission of which is still under progress, may therefore bring a wealth of new data and fascinating discoveries....
06-03-98 13H54 AY France 2

The south pole of our moon. Picture taken by Clementine, a probe sent by the " Pentagon "




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