New research paper explains how the moon’s water cycle could work

Even though Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin described the Moon’s dry, barren regolith as “magnificent desolation,” it turns out that our one satellite actually has an abundance of lunar water locked in its soils and waters. rocks, in particular at the level of its polar caps without light.

Both poles of our Moon have permanently dark territories where spacecraft and probes have detected large amounts of water ice that Moon-bound astronauts might be able to draw for water, from l cheap rocket air and fuel. H2O is also deep inside the dusty lunar soil.

Since the discovery of lunar water in 2008, after India’s Chandrayaan-1 deployed its NASA-loaned instrument called the Moon Mineralogical Mapper, astrophysicists and planetary geologists have been wondering where the water comes from, in due to the extreme arid climate of the Moon and the absence of any atmosphere.

Early theories postulated that he could have hitchhiked on the surface inside water-carrying asteroids or from solar winds bombarding the Moon with ionized molecules which then formed H2O. However, in a new research paper recently published in the online journal Astrophysical Journal Letters, a team of international scientists believe all of this extra moisture could be coming from Earth’s own magnetosphere.

Instead of the evaporation of lunar water in the harsh climate, the results of this paper have partial clues to the solar wind hypothesis, but expand on the external causes by presenting evidence that this moisture is a component of a dynamic recovery system caused by our own planet. This process has important implications for future missions to establish colonies on the Moon.

Another application of the information could be used to find out where large amounts of water are also found on distant exoplanets.

While solar winds are only a fraction of the moon’s water, this new multinational survey indicates that those same solar winds are expected to evaporate up to half of the moon’s water on a monthly basis, all according to lunar cycles. This is where Earth’s planetary magnetic winds come in, obviously bolstering the satellite with a constant storm of ionized particles that develop into water molecules.

By all accounts, 50 percent of the Moon’s water is expected to disappear in high latitude regions during the three-day period of the full moon when it enters the Earth’s magnetosphere. But further inspections of the hydroxyl surface / water surface maps courtesy of Chandrayaan-1’s Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) reveal that lunar surface water does not disappear during this magnetosphere protection event. .

It was originally believed that the Earth’s magnetic field prevented the solar wind from reaching the moon, so water couldn’t be regenerated faster than it evaporated, but the new study disproves these ideas.

Using a time series of water surface maps taken before, during and after this transit of the magnetosphere, scientists are convinced that the fluids of the Moon could be replenished by waves of magnetospheric ions. called “wind from the Earth”.

This interactive dance between solar winds and Earth’s magnetic field helps complete the Moon’s trapped water supply in a symbiotic relationship that has a certain cosmic perfection. Hydration is really the key to the universe!


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