Reaching for the Moon

The moon entrances us—it is near yet far away, familiar, yet unremittingly mysterious. In synchronous rotation, it has a face it never shows. It pulls the oceans; it stirs the blood. It beckons into the unknown. On Universe, Claire L. Evans says that in 1969, six artists snuck "a minuscule enamel wafer inscribed with six tiny drawings" onto Apollo 12's landing module. Claire writes, "the artistry of this 'museum' is as much about the gesture of sneaking it, illicitly, onto the leg of the lunar lander, as it is about the drawings themselves." On Starts With a Bang!, Ethan Siegel explains that due to the very slight tilt of the Moon on its axis, permanently shadowed craters at the North and South poles may hold "some very, very dirty ice, mixed with normal Moon-dust and rock, possibly similar to a glacier on Earth!" Could these ice-traps help sustain a lunar colony? Or should we be content to study the Moon with the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter?

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