Release Images

Release No.: 2020-31
For Release: Monday, November 23, 2020 - 7:00am

Growing Interest in Moon Resources Could Cause Tension, Scientists Find

image of the moon, taken with NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

Taken by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, this image of the moon is part of the collection of the highest resolution, near-global topographic maps of the moon ever created. Overlaid on this image are some of the hotspots identified for cosmology telescopes on the moon; few ideal locations for these telescopes exist on the moon, as others conflict with the radio quiet zone.

Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/DLR/ASU; Overlay: M. Elvis, A. Krosilowski, T. Milligan

Lunar cold traps located at the South Pole of the moon

Lunar cold traps located at the South Pole of the moon, are critical to all moon-based operations because they contain frozen water molecules. Water is required for all moon-based operations because it is needed to grow food, and to break down into oxygen for breathing and hydrogen for fuel. The four white-circled regions in this image contain the coldest terrain with average annual near-surface temperatures of 25-50 K. They are about 50 km across.

Credit: David Paige, reproduced with permission.