Here’s when and where to hear NASA reveal an ‘exciting new discovery’ mystery on the Moon
UPDATE: Full story revealed here!
NASA is about to announce an exciting new discovery on the Moon. This “moon mystery” is something we’ve been speculating on all weekend, and on Monday we’ll finally find out what it is.
This would appear to be something that could aid NASA’s planned crewed landings on the Moon – suggesting it could be water or water vapor – that could be used during lunar exploration. .
This is because it is a discovery by NASA’s Stratospheric Infrared Astronomy Observatory (SOFIA), a “flying telescope” that focuses on discovering the atmospheres of planets and moons. .
When is the announcement?
It is scheduled for Monday, October 26, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. UTC, or 4:00 p.m. GMT, 5:00 p.m. CET, 12:00 p.m. (noon) EDT, and 9:00 a.m. PDT.
Participants will include:
- Paul Hertz, Director of the Astrophysics Division at NASA Headquarters, Washington
- Jacob Bleacher, Chief Exploration Scientist for the Directorate of the Human Exploration and Operations Mission at NASA Headquarters
- Casey Honniball, postdoctoral fellow at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland
- Naseem Rangwala, project scientist for the SOFIA mission, NASA Ames Research Center, Silicon Valley, California
Where to listen live NASA’s announcement on the Moon
The briefing will be broadcast live on NASA TV on NASA website.
What do we know about the ad?
All NASA has said so far is that the new discovery “contributes to NASA’s efforts to learn more about the Moon in support of deep space exploration.”
NASA has also said that understanding the science of the moon also helps piece together the larger history of the inner solar system.
What is Artemis?
NASA returns to the moon. Having last sent astronauts in 1972, his next Artemis program, the agency will send the first woman and the next man to the lunar surface in 2024.
Artemis is a way for NASA to prepare for human exploration of Mars as early as the 2030s.
The Artemis program looks like this:
- November 2021: Artemis-I – the pioneer.
- 2023: Artemis-II – the first crewed lunar flyover of the 21st century to the south pole of the Moon, where ice water is known to exist.
- October 2024: Artemis-III – the first crewed moon landing since 1972.
Other Artemis missions each year until 2030 will help build the Lunar Gateway dwelling module and descend three more times to the surface of the Moon (Artemis V, VI and VII or VIII).
What is NASA’s SOFIA?
The SOFIA is a specially equipped Boeing 747SP which has been modified to carry a 2.7 meter / 106 inch reflector telescope.
Flying above 99% of the obscuring water vapor in the atmosphere, SOFIA observes in infrared wavelengths and can detect phenomena that cannot be seen with visible light. It often adds a new layer of data to that obtained using ground observatories.
However, the main benefit of SOFIA for astronomers is that it can fly through the shadows of planets and moons in the solar system by obscuring the stars. It’s done with both Saturn’s moon titan and dwarf planet Pluto, successfully detecting starlight passing through the atmosphere of these celestial bodies for a few seconds while flying at 40,000 feet.
I wish you clear skies and big eyes.