Chandrayaan - Mission Moon

All about Indian Mission to Moon

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

NASA radar aboard Chandrayaan-1 finds ice on moon's north pole

A NASA radar aboard India's maiden lunar mission Chandrayaan-1 has detected craters filled with thick deposits of ice near the moon's north pole, the US space agency said on Tuesday.
NASA's Mini-Sar experiment found more than 40 small craters, ranging in size from one to nine miles, containing water ice.
"Although the total amount of ice depends on its thickness in each crater, it's estimated there could be at least 600 million metric tons of water ice," the space agency said in a statement.
The radar's findings "show the moon is an even more interesting and attractive scientific, exploration and operational destination than people had previously thought," said Paul Spudis, lead investigator of the Mini-SAR experiment at the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Houston, Texas.
The Mini-SAR has spent the last year mapping the moon's permanently-shadowed polar craters that are not visible from Earth, using the polarization properties of reflected radio waves.
"After analysing the data, our science team determined a strong indication of water ice, a finding which will give future missions a new target to further explore and exploit," Jason Crusan of NASA's Space Operations Mission Directorate in Washington said.
Chandrayaan-1 was India's contribution to the armada of unmanned spacecraft to have been launched to the Moon in recent years.