Photos: The Search for Water on the Moon

The Clementine Probe

Lunar and Planetary Institute/Compiled by Paul Spudis, Ben Bussey

Permanently shadowed craters at the lunar poles, called "cold traps," might be repositories of water ice. The U.S. Clementine probe gathered data about the moon’s poles in 1994. In these composite maps, areas in permanent darkness are black, while areas of permanent illumination are white; areas of mixed lighting condition are represented in various shades of gray. Note that the south polar area has the largest area of permanent darkness. Several areas are evident that have near-constant sun illumination.

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