In this blog we talk a lot about current issues in the water industry. Whether it’s new technology in the industrial sector, drinking water cleanliness or creative ways to recycle and reuse our most precious resource, we cast a wide net (no pun intended) when it comes the stories we comment on. Our topics have always had one thing in common, though – they take place on planet Earth.

Until now, that is. Today we head to space to discuss a recently published paper from Nature Geoscience that theorizes that the Moon contains much larger amounts of water than previously thought.

Until recently, the sum total of the moon’s water was thought to exist as surface ice at the bottom of deep craters. However, around 2008 researchers found that the Moon’s volcanic material contains trace amounts of water. In this most recent research, Ralph Milliken of Brown University and Shuai Li at the University of Hawaii looked at volcanic rock samples collected during the Apollo missions in the late 1960s and early 1970s. By building on previous work and studying recent NASA satellite images, the scientists theorize that, because this volcanic matter is so widespread across the surface of the moon, the interior holds large reserves of water. These water deposits may dwarf the relatively small amount known to exist on the surface. Perhaps in the future researchers will be able to actually quantify how much water is locked away under the Moon’s barren exterior.

In recent years, organizations like NASA and the European Space Agency have also been studying the water holding potential of other moons and planets in our solar system. Mars, Europa (Jupiter’s second largest moon) and Enceladus (Saturn’s sixth largest moon) have all been studied with probes like the Mars Rover or more remotely with the Hubble Space Telescope. In the distant past, Mars may have actually held large amounts of surface water while Europa and Enceladus potentially have more water than Earth deep below their frozen surfaces.

Researchers are also using the Hubble Space Telescope to look for water in distant parts of the galaxy. In an ongoing study, scientists are observing how water behaves in the atmosphere of the exoplanet WASP-121b to learn more about the planet itself.  WASP-121b orbits a star about 880 light-years from Earth by the way.

Just like water is at core of the work we do at LuminUltra, it is also central to fascinating discoveries like these that are driving our understanding of the universe forward.


Stacey Pineau

Clearly explaining complex topics has been Stacey’s focus for close to 25 years now. She helps plan how best to reach the right people, then works to provide them with relevant information that’s easy to understand. Stacey is a team player with an entrepreneurial spirit. She has broad experience that spans the private and public sectors. A lover of words, Stacey has a slightly irrational love of the library and a personal collection of way too many books and magazines. She lives in Fredericton with her husband Ray, their two children and dog Scouty.

Related Posts

Why “Raw Water” May Not Be as Pure as You Think – The Risks of “All-Natural” Raw Water

  Over the past several years, we’ve seen a drastic increase in the demand for all-natural products across several industries. Consumers are becoming more and more aware of both the environmental and health-related risks associated with many chemical products, preservatives, pesticides, and packing materials and as a result, are demanding more transparency when it comes… Read More

Cutting back on chocolate this Easter? Here’s one more reason why you should

  Just one week ago, on March 22nd, we celebrated World Water Day, where organizations, companies, and individuals from around the globe drew attention to the importance of water and the significant challenges we’re facing in the 21st century. Water pollution and large-scale water shortages have already left 2.1 billion people without access to safe… Read More

The Energy Footprint of Drinking Water

  Drinking water and wastewater systems are generally the largest energy consumers for municipal governments. However, there is little published information available on the exact energy usage for specific systems. A recent article in Journal – American Water Works Association, looked to address this knowledge gap for drinking water utilities. The authors surveyed drinking water… Read More