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Moon Earth Space

Apollo 17 Soil Matches Ancient Earth's Ocean Ridges In Water Content 78

StartsWithABang writes: They say that one of the most exciting phrases to hear in science is not "eureka!" but "that's funny," and the Apollo 17 astronauts, just over 43 years ago, certainly got such a moment when they discovered orange soil just beneath the grey regiolith. What turned out to be volcanic glass with tin inclusions had another surprise: olivine deposits that showed signs that they contained significant amounts of water inclusions when they were baked, at about ~1200 parts-per-million. This matches the water levels in Earth's upper mantle along ocean ridges, providing further evidence for the giant impact hypothesis and a common origin for the Earth and Moon.
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Apollo 17 Soil Matches Ancient Earth's Ocean Ridges In Water Content

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  • Right (Score:4, Funny)

    by MagickalMyst ( 1003128 ) on Thursday December 24, 2015 @01:14PM (#51178827)
    FTA: "it’s the same concentration of water as rocks found in Earth’s interior! In other words, if you ever doubted that the rocks from the Moon and the rocks from the Earth came from the same place..."

    Yep, the Nevada desert. Thanks Stanley!
  • They say that one of the most exciting phrases to hear in science is not "eureka!" but "that's funny."

    Who is the "they" who said this? It is the most ignorant thing I've heard today! It is the difference, to paraphrase Twain, between a lightning bug and a lightning bolt. "That's funny" is a significant observation; Eureka! is a celebration, a dance, to an personal intellectual achievement. One cannot sit still in such moments, one shouts, screams, runs in circles, speaks in tongues, laughs uncontroll

    • Oh, I see what happened, he said "to hear" and you heard "to experience"
      • Exactly. Pardon me...again.

        Over and out.

        • It is either
          over: you expect the talk to continiou with an answer of partner
          or out: the talk is terminated

          'Over and out' happens only in bad movies.

          And remember to release the push to talk button, or in most cases you wont hear/receive any answer.

    • by njnnja ( 2833511 )

      The difference is that "Eureka!" marks the completion of an answer, which, while significant, is not as exciting (to a scientist) as *beginning* a journey of discovery. "That's funny" means something that we thought we know maybe isn't so, and therefore it is the start of a quest for more knowledge. To a scientist, that is when the excitement happens.

      Having said that, this seems to be tying up loose ends more than asking new questions, so I'm not sure how many scientists are saying "that's funny" to this

    • > They say that one of the most exciting phrases to hear in science is not "eureka!" but "that's funny."

      Who is the "they" who said this?

      Isaac Asimov

  • Pro-Human Hype (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Thursday December 24, 2015 @01:46PM (#51178955) Journal

    It's arguable that all of this wouldn't have come to pass -- that we never would have learned any of this -- if we hadn't sent a human scientist to the Moon...that this is what's truly needed if we want to uncover the truths about the rest of the worlds in our Solar System: scientific exploration by a human who knows what they're looking for. Or more importantly, who recognizes something interesting when they see it, and who isn't afraid to kick up what might be lurking where a more autonomous mind might not think to look!

    This seems to be presenting an argument for more scientists (instead of just astronauts) and/or on-site human exploration instead of remote-controlled robots.

    However, the argument for both is weak. A regular astronaut and remote rover could spot orange soil also.

    In fact, a rover could have more "color" filters instead of be limited to the 3 ranges (cones) that human eyes have. There can be odd spectral variations that human eyes just can't detect, including the infra-red and ultraviolet range.

    And for the same money, bots can cover far more territory and linger in an interesting spot, if needed.

  • by wonkey_monkey ( 2592601 ) on Thursday December 24, 2015 @02:17PM (#51179067) Homepage

    You foist another Forbes link upon us to tell us about a discovery that's 43 years old?

    Sheesh.

  • Is that the same as "regolith [wikipedia.org]"
  • It is astounding how quickly it cooled off when it separated from the earth 6,000 years ago

  • I say: Bring it back! Its time to reunite the long lost moon material back to our motherworld where it belongs!
  • well I've known that as long as I've been seeing his attempts at science journalism. But does he actually have anything of interest in this article?

    I didn't actually know that "NASA/Arizona State University," had an online, high resolution "Digital Petrographic Slide Collection" ; not surprising. I'll dig into that more. Nice pictures. The fascinating corrosion textures on the surface of the glass grains really raise a lot of questions. Which Ethan doesn't notice. (OK - I'm biased - I was repairing a petro

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