文章来源:未知 文章作者:meng 发布时间:2009-11-14 01:15 字体: [ ]  进入论坛

Nasa's experiment last month to find water on the Moon was a major success, US scientists have announced.


A camera on the probe shows the ejecta <a href=plume1 about 20 seconds after impact" width="466" height="280" src="/upimg/091114/4_012456_1.jpg" />
A camera on the probe shows the ejecta plume about 20 seconds after impact

The space agency smashed a rocket and a probe into a large crater2(弹坑,火山口) at the lunar south pole, hoping to kick up(引起,激起) ice.

Scientists who have studied the data now say instruments trained on the impact plume saw copious3(丰富的) quantities of water-ice and water vapour(水蒸气).

One researcher described this as the equivalent of(相当于) "a dozen two-gallon buckets(水桶)" of water.

"We didn't just find a little bit; we found a significant amount," said Anthony Colaprete, chief scientist for the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) mission.

No doubt

October's experiment involved driving a 2,200kg Centaur4 rocket stage into the 100km-wide Cabeus Crater, a permanently5 shadowed depression(沮丧,萧条) at the Moon's far south.

At the time, scientists were hoping for a big plume of debris6 some 10km high which could be seen by Earth telescopes.

The actual debris cloud was much smaller, about 1.6km high, but sufficiently7 large to betray the evidence researchers were seeking.

The near-infrared spectrometer(红外线分光计) on the LCROSS probe that followed the rocket into the crater detected water-ice and water vapour. The ultraviolet-visible spectrometer provided additional confirmation8 by identifying the hydroxyl(氢氧根) (OH) molecule9, which arises when water is broken apart in sunlight.

"We were able to match the spectra10(光谱,领域) from LCROSS data only when we inserted the spectra for water," Dr Colaprete said.

"No other reasonable combination of other compounds that we tried matched the observations. The possibility of contamination from the Centaur also was ruled out."

Useful resource

The total quantity of H2O spied by the instruments was more than 100kg. It came out of a 20m-30m wide hole dug up by the impacting Centaur rocket.

The LCROSS scientists stressed that the results presented on Friday were preliminary findings only, and further analysis could raise the final assessment11 of the amount of water in Cabeus.

Peter Schultz, from Brown University and a co-investigator on the LCROSS mission, said: "What's really exciting is we've only hit one spot. It's kind of like when you're drilling for oil. Once you find it in one place, there's a greater chance you'll find more nearby."

The regular surface of the Moon as seen from Earth is drier than any desert on our planet. But researchers have long speculated(沉思,推测) that some permanently shadowed places might harbour considerable stores of water, perhaps delivered by impacting comets billions of years ago.

If future investigations12 find the quantities to be particularly large, this water could become a useful resource for any astronauts who might base themselves at the lunar poles.

"It can be used for drinking water," said Mike Wargo, Nasa's chief lunar scientist for exploration systems.

"You can break it down and have breathable air for crews. But also, if you have significant quantities of this stuff, you have the constituents13(成分) of one of the most potent14(强有力的) rocket fuels - oxygen and hydrogen."


1 plume H2SzM     
  • Her hat was adorned with a plume.她帽子上饰着羽毛。
  • He does not plume himself on these achievements.他并不因这些成就而自夸。
2 crater WofzH     
  • With a telescope you can see the huge crater of Ve-suvius.用望远镜你能看到巨大的维苏威火山口。
  • They came to the lip of a dead crater.他们来到了一个死火山口。
3 copious koizs     
  • She supports her theory with copious evidences.她以大量的例证来充实自己的理论。
  • Every star is a copious source of neutrinos.每颗恒星都是丰富的中微子源。
4 centaur zraz4     
  • His face reminded me somehow of a centaur.他的脸使我想起半人半马的怪物。
  • No wonder he had soon been hustled away to centaur school.也难怪父母匆匆忙忙就把他送到了半人马学校。
5 permanently KluzuU     
  • The accident left him permanently scarred.那次事故给他留下了永久的伤疤。
  • The ship is now permanently moored on the Thames in London.该船现在永久地停泊在伦敦泰晤士河边。
6 debris debris     
  • After the bombing there was a lot of debris everywhere.轰炸之后到处瓦砾成堆。
  • Bacteria sticks to food debris in the teeth,causing decay.细菌附着在牙缝中的食物残渣上,导致蛀牙。
7 sufficiently 0htzMB     
  • It turned out he had not insured the house sufficiently.原来他没有给房屋投足保险。
  • The new policy was sufficiently elastic to accommodate both views.新政策充分灵活地适用两种观点。
8 confirmation ZYMya     
  • We are waiting for confirmation of the news.我们正在等待证实那个消息。
  • We need confirmation in writing before we can send your order out.给你们发送订购的货物之前,我们需要书面确认。
9 molecule Y6Tzn     
  • A molecule of water is made up of two atoms of hygrogen and one atom of oxygen.一个水分子是由P妈?f婘??妈?成的。
  • This gives us the structural formula of the molecule.这种方式给出了分子的结构式。
10 spectra RvCwh     
  • The infra-red spectra of quinones present a number of interesting features. 醌类的红外光谱具有一些有趣的性质。
  • This relation between the frequency and the field spectra was noted experimentally. 实验上已经发现频率和场频谱之间的这种关系。
11 assessment vO7yu     
  • This is a very perceptive assessment of the situation.这是一个对该情况的极富洞察力的评价。
  • What is your assessment of the situation?你对时局的看法如何?
12 investigations 02de25420938593f7db7bd4052010b32     
(正式的)调查( investigation的名词复数 ); 侦查; 科学研究; 学术研究
  • His investigations were intensive and thorough but revealed nothing. 他进行了深入彻底的调查,但没有发现什么。
  • He often sent them out to make investigations. 他常常派他们出去作调查。
13 constituents 63f0b2072b2db2b8525e6eff0c90b33b     
n.选民( constituent的名词复数 );成分;构成部分;要素
  • She has the full support of her constituents. 她得到本区选民的全力支持。
  • Hydrogen and oxygen are the constituents of water. 氢和氧是水的主要成分。 来自《简明英汉词典》
14 potent C1uzk     
  • The medicine had a potent effect on your disease.这药物对你的病疗效很大。
  • We must account of his potent influence.我们必须考虑他的强有力的影响。
TAG标签: water moon earth