Volume 88 Issue 25 | p. 27 | Concentrates
Issue Date: June 21, 2010

The Moon Is ‘Wetter’ Than First Believed

Geologists use hydroxyl groups in moon rock minerals to extrapolate the amount of water once on the lunar surface
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Analytical SCENE
Keywords: hydroxyl, apatite, secondary ion mass spectrometry, moon water, volcanic rock

Geologists studying moon rocks have found evidence that water once existed on the lunar surface at levels 100 times greater than previously thought (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1006677107). Using secondary ion mass spectrometry, Francis M. McCubbin and coworkers at Carnegie Institution for Science, in Washington, D.C., looked for hydroxyl groups in the mineral apatite from lunar samples collected during Apollo missions in the 1970s. The team extrapolated . . .

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