U.S. team finds evidence of water in moon minerals

A team of US geologists has found structurally bound hydroxyl groups in a mineral in a lunar rock returned to earth by the Apollo programme.

Geologists at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), working with colleagues at the University of Tennessee, found the water in a calcium phosphate mineral, apatite, within a basalt collected from the moon’s surface by the Apollo 14 astronauts, Xinhua reported.

To be precise, they didn’t find “water” – the molecule H2O. Rather, they found hydrogen in the form of a hydroxyl anion, OH-, bound in the apatite mineral lattice.

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