Friday, November 13, 2009
Water, water, everywhere.
Last month, after NASA's LCROSS spacecraft failed to make a noticeable splash when landing on the moon, I blogged about how it could take months for the data to be analyzed. Well, it took only about five weeks. Today, NASA announced that LCROSS did indeed detect water, and a fair amount of it. Final results will still take months, but the data are clear that water was present.
Why didn't we see the show from Earth? Part of the reason is that the probe crashed behind the big mountain visible in the bottom of this picture, so the mountain likely blocked our view of some or most of the plume. It's also just difficult to predict what will happen when you crash one object into another.
Anyway, the LCROSS work is still just beginning, so be on the lookout for more results in future months!