The Chinese Chang’E-5 landing has confirmed evidence of native water on the moon. Here is more information.
In a series of surprising events, China’s Chang’E-5 lunar landing has confirmed evidence of native water on the Moon. The result was confirmed by spectral analysis of samples taken from various places on the Moon.
Lunar samples were taken from Oceanus Procellarum on the Moon. During the mission, the scientists on board conducted a spectral analysis of the collected samples that provided the first confirmation of the presence of water on the Moon, in 2020. The landing returned to Earth in 2021 and is performed a thorough laboratory analysis that re-confirmed the results of the spectral analysis.
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Now, in a surprising development, the same team of scientists has confirmed that the water collected from the samples originated from the Moon, that is, that it originated on the Moon itself.
In a statement to the press, LI Chunlai of the National Astronomical Observatory of the Chinese Academy of Sciences said: “For the first time in the world, the results of laboratory analysis of lunar return samples and spectral data from Surface studies were used together to examine the presence, shape, and amount of “water” in lunar samples, and the results accurately answer the question of distribution characteristics and in the Chang’E-5 landing zone and provide a ground truth for the interpretation and estimation of water signals in the remote sensing survey data.
The research was published on the Nature Communications website in an article entitled “Evidence of water on the lunar surface from Chang’E-5 in situ spectra and returned samples.”
Although there are no rivers or lakes present on the Moon, evidence of native water was found on lunar rocks and soil in the form of hydroxyl, which is one of the major constituents of water.
LI Chunlai said: “This excess hydroxyl is indigenous, demonstrating the presence of internal water of lunar origin in the Chang’E-5 lunar samples, and that water played an important role in the formation and crystallization of late lunar basaltic magma “.
China is planning more missions to continue investigating the presence of water on the moon.