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If You’re Not Doing Anything Early Friday Morning …

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Sonora, CA — If you’re not doing anything early Friday morning you might step outside at 4:30 and watch NASA’s LCROSS spacecraft and its Centaur booster plunge simultaneously into a shadowed crater near the Moon’s south pole.

The double impact will be shown live on NASA TV from the point of view of the LCROSS spacecraft.

Impact debris plumes emerging from the crater may be visible through backyard telescopes. North American sky watchers west of the Mississippi River are favored with darkness and good views of the Moon at the time of impact.

The impacts are designed to unearth frozen water from the cold and shadowy floor of crater Cabeus near the lunar south pole. Moon water is valuable. It costs about $30,000 to rocket a liter of water from Earth to the Moon. If NASA could find water already on the Moon, it would save a lot of money for future thirsty colonists. H2O also can be split into O2 for breathing and H2 for rocket fuel.

Click SPACEWEATHER.com for additional information.

Written by bill.johnson@mlode.com

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