NASA’s robot to search for water on moon
NASA will send a golf cart-sized robot to the moon in 2022 to search for deposits of water below the surface. This is an effort to evaluate if there’s water on the moon and if it’s there, it would be helpful to the astronauts going to the moon in 2024.
The VIPER robot will drive for miles on the dusty lunar surface to get a closer look at underground pockets of “hundreds of millions of tons of water ice” that could help turn the moon into a jumping-off point to Mars.
VIPER stands for Volatiles Investigating Polar Exploration Rover. The rover is expected to arrive on the moon’s south polar region in December 2022, carrying four instruments to sample lunar soil for traces of hydrogen and oxygen – the basic components of water that can be separated and synthesized into fuel for a planned fleet of commercial lunar launch vehicles.
The Moon is very hot during the day but very cold at night. The average surface temperature of the Moon is 107 degrees Celsius during the day and -153 degrees Celsius at night.