Thursday, 21 September 2023
TechThis is the reason the US, China, Russia and India are racing...

This is the reason the US, China, Russia and India are racing to the moon


Almost every country that has a space program is racing towards it Month and fighting for a place at the Moon’s south pole.

Most recently, India succeeded in landing a spacecraft there, on Wednesday (23/8). India made history as the fourth country to successfully land on the Moon after the US, Soviet Union and China. Apart from that, India’s national space agency, ISRO, also successfully landed the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft near the south pole of the Moon.

This is the first time India has landed a spacecraft on the Moon, and the first time for a country to successfully land on the coveted south pole of the Moon.

As quoted from NPR, the south pole of the Moon has its own charm. Countries that can land there could have the opportunity to explore dark polar craters in hopes of finding usable quantities of water ice.

Scientists Find Water on the Moon

In the early 1960s, before the first Apollo landing, scientists speculated that there was likely water on the Moon. However, lunar samples brought by the Apollo crew for analysis in the late 1960s and early 1970s appeared to be dry.

Quoted from Reuters, in 2008, Brown University researchers reviewed the Moon samples with new technology and found hydrogen material in small grains of volcanic glass. In 2009, NASA instruments aboard ISRO India’s Chandrayaan-1 probe detected water on the Moon’s surface.

That same year, another NASA space probe that reached the south pole discovered ice under the surface of the Moon. NASA’s previous mission, Lunar Prospector in 1998, had found evidence that the highest concentrations of ice were in the shadowy craters of the Moon’s south pole.

The Importance of Water on the Moon

Scientists are interested in studying ancient ice caps on the Moon, because they can provide records about Moon volcanoes, materials brought by comets and asteroids to Earth, and the origin of the oceans.

If sufficient ice is available, it can become a source of drinking water for lunar exploration missions and can help cool equipment.

Ice can also be broken down to produce hydrogen for fuel and oxygen for breathing to support missions to Mars or mining on the Moon.

For your information, the 1967 UN Outer Space Treaty prohibited any country from claiming ownership of the Moon. However, there are no provisions that can stop commercial operations.

The US-led effort to establish a set of principles for exploration of the Moon and use of its resources, the Artemis Treaty, has been signed by 27 countries. However, China and Russia have not signed the agreement.

Watch Video “China Accelerates Fourth Phase of Lunar Exploration Project
[Gambas:Video 20detik]


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