NASA has found water on the Moon, and this is big news for the agency and space enthusiasts everywhere!
It seems a little funny to me that since my co-op at NASA, many people have come to regard my opinion on NASA missions much more highly than ever before, and some friends even look to me to me as a sort of expert on what NASA is doing.I tell someone that I work for NASA, and I suddenly become a representative of NASA that people will question about projects, missions, and NASA objectives.
Don’t get me wrong. I am quite flattered by this.I’m only worried that I won’t do NASA justice, because I’m not an expert on NASA, just an enthusiast.
When the news stations announced “NASA is bombing the Moon, and how much is this costing you?Watch tonight at 5,” I had several people ask me over the phone, or by electronic communications, what the point of this whole thing was and why we were spending so much money on it.
I am a huge proponent of manned space exploration, so for someone like me this mission was a huge deal.I am not an expert on LCROSS by any means, but I did know that the purpose was to investigate what resources lie on the moon, especially water that we could use to sustain a permanent lunar base that would provide a huge leap forward in prolonged human life on an extraterrestrial celestial body.This is the stuff that dreams are made of, and what I told most people about the mission.
Well, guess what?They found water!And not just a little water.Lots of WATER!And I, like many space enthusiasts today are exceptionally excited about this discovery.
We are also exceptionally excited about the recent successful flight test of the Ares I-X rocket, the potential launch vehicle for missions to the moon, including the set up of a lunar base.On the days leading up to the launch, there were many fellow astronautics track aerospace engineering students at Embry-Riddle that were itching with excitement over the rocket.I can’t tell you how many of my friends were telling me about the launch.It was almost like Christmas for us. Many of us would be ecstatic to work on the Constellation missions.
We can only hope that the powers that be in Washington are excited enough about these successes to support a manned mission to the moon.The fate of manned space exploration rests in their hands.
This is an exciting time for the “astro kids,” as the astronautics track students are often called.Ask just about any of them what they think about water on the moon or the Ares I-X rocket, and I bet you’ll find that they’re excitement is palpable.We can see that we are making huge steps of progress towards the moon, and it is an amazing feeling!
Some news stories for additional information:
Ares I-X launch: