NASA lunar mission: In 2009, NASA sent a rocket crashing into the moon’s South Pole, spewing a plume of debris that revealed vast reserves of ice beneath the barren lunar surface, the space agency is racing to pick up where its little-remembered project left off. About the LCROSS (Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite) Mission:

    • The Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) was a robotic spacecraft operated by NASA. 
  • The mission was conceived as a low-cost means of determining the nature of hydrogen detected at the polar regions of the Moon.
  • Launched immediately after discovery of lunar water by Chandrayaan-1, the main LCROSS mission objective was to further explore the presence of water ice in a permanently shadowed crater near a lunar polar region.
Results of LCROSS (Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite) Mission: NASA lunar mission
  • The lunar soil within shadowy craters is rich in useful materials, such as hydrogen gas, ammonia and methane, such as sodium, mercury and silver.
  • It was successful in confirming water in the southern lunar crater Cabeus.
  • Hydrogen found at the lunar poles belongs to crystals of water ice.
Benefits of finding Hydrogen on the lunar surface:
  •  Millions of tons of frozen water, enough to make it an effective oasis for explorers venturing away from Earth.
  • Presence of hydrogen on the lunar surface represents fuel, water and air for human sustenance.
  • Possibility of agriculture is enhanced with the presence of hydrogen that could be harvested  from the soil.
Read More: India’s Most Ambitious Space Mission  |  ISRO Gears Up For Chandrayaan-2 Mission