Water found on the Moon - NASA announces
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Water found on the Moon - NASA announces

NASA has announced they have discovered water on the sun-lit surface of the moon for the first time.

The US space agency confirmed the news on Monday, revealing conclusive evidence of water on our only natural satellite.

The amount found was only equivalent to a 12-ounce bottle of water, but remains a substantial discovery.

The water is the first to be detected on the sun-lit part of the lunar surface - with only pockets of eternally shadowed sections previously seen to contain molecular water.

It had been assumed that the moon's surface was dry until the 1990s, when orbiting spacecraft found indications of ice in large and inaccessible craters near the moon's poles.

The discovery of water in sun-lit areas has implications for future missions to the moon and deeper space exploration.

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Nasa reportedly plans to land astronauts on the Moon again, and looks to eventually establish a human colony there too.

Astronauts could use the natural resource, which may have arrived via comets or solar winds, and turn it into oxygen or drinking water to sustain a future colony.

Scientists also say the water could be used to make rocket fuel, lightening missions and slashing mission costs to make interplanetary space travel easier and cheaper.

Two astronauts - a man and a woman - will land at the lunar south pole by 2024 under what Nasa has called its Artemis programme.