Describing discovery of water on moon as a ‘historic’ one, ISRO chairman G Madhavan Nair has said that country’s Chandrayaan-I mission was a complete success.
Speaking to media persons in Bangalore, Nair said: “The Chandrayaan mission performed wonderfully. Earlier, I said it had completed 95 per cent of its mission objectives. Today, I say it has done 110 per cent.”
He confirmed the presence of water on moon and said: “All over the world people are applauding the Chandrayaan’s achievement. The discovery of water on the moon has been acknowledged as a significant discovery. The main aim of the Chandrayaan1 mission has been achieved.”
About the collection of the data received from the mission, Nair said that the data are huge and it would be six months to three years before all of that was analysed and digested.
On the topic of discovery of water on moon, he said that the quantity of water on lunar surface is more than what was expected. He added that the moon impact probe picked up strong signals of water.
“The water is not in form of sea, lake, not even as a drop. It is embedded in the surface in the minerals found there. However, the quantity of such molecules is much more than what we were expecting. It can be extracted, but the quantity would be very less,” he added.
He said that scientists are still wondering how water is present on the moon but as per initial assessment, it seems that it is because of solar winds and possible meteors and asteroids that crash onto the moon surface.
Nair, nevertheless, added that presence of water molecules doesn’t mean the presence of life on the moon.
On the possibility of the establishment of a permanent lunar base, he further said that after the discovery of water, hopes for such a future endeavour have become more realistic.
Acknowledging NASA for collaboration in the discovery, he said: “We truly believe it is a pathbreaking finding. But this is just the beginning.”