If the water could be pumped to the surface, it could help alleviate shortages on the island.
Despite its proximity to a very blue planet, the Earth’s Moon appeared to be completely dry, with samples returned by the Apollo missions being nearly devoid of water. But in recent years, a number of studies have turned up what appears to be water in some locations on the Moon, although the evidence wasn’t always decisive.
Today, NASA is announcing that it has used an airborne observatory to spot clear indications of water in unexpected places. But the water may be in a form that makes accessing it much harder. Separately, an analysis of spots where water could be easier to reach indicates that there’s more potential reservoirs than we’d previously suspected.
Up in the air
With no atmosphere and low gravity, the Moon can’t hang on to water on its surface. The first time that sunlight heats lunar water up, it will form a vapor and eventually escape into space. But there are regions on the Moon, primarily near the poles, that are permanently shadowed. There, temperatures remain perpetually low, and ice can survive indefinitely. And, to test this possibility, NASA crashed some hardware into a shady area near the Moon’s south pole and found water vapor amidst the debris.
Future astronauts seeking water on the moon may not need to go into the most treacherous craters in its polar regions to find it.
Water quality and logistics monitoring software Ketos has raised $15 million from a group of investors to take advantage of the growing demand for better water management tools and technologies.
The potential for more stringent regulatory oversight of industrial water use and wastewater management from local, state and federal government coupled with increasing consumer and investor demands for better corporate environmental stewardship is driving an unprecedented adoption of technology and services aimed at increasing conservation and reducing waste across industries.
Water monitoring can also provide relevant information to public officials about the potential for disease outbreaks and other health related issues in a population.
Recently, monitoring wastewater streams have been used to detect outbreaks of the virus that causes COVID-19.
The renewed attention on water is one reason why an investment arm of the banking giant Citi joined lead investor Motley Fool Ventures and Illuminated Funds Group to come as new investors into Ketos. They joined existing backers like Ajax Strategies, Better Ventures, Broadway Angels, Plum Valley Ventures, and Rethink Impact.
Silicon Valley Bank provided the company with $3 million in debt financing.
The company said it would use the funding to develop new capabilities for its combined hardware and software service that provides information into water quality and the existence of potential damage to water pipes for distribution and disposal of water.
“Creating one of the largest centralized data lakes of water quality insights — with information on heavy-metal toxins, coupled with location-based mapping and potential contamination sources — the potential for what machine learning and artificial intelligence can achieve is limitless,” said Meena Sankaran, the company’s founder and chief executive.
One other selling point is the company’s use of machine learning to predict where problems with water systems might arise — avoiding the need for more costly investments into infrastructure.
“KETOS is truly disrupting the water intelligence industry with the data it captures autonomously (remotely controlled) and makes available to its customers for forecasting water management issues, which is even more top of mind as the world battles COVID,” said Ollen Douglass, Managing Director of Motley Fool Ventures, in a statement. “For the first time, it is possible to use predictive modeling and much needed mission-critical insights with $0 capital infrastructure investments, to build, take action and make informed decisions about a water network.”
Farmers in Mexico ambushed soldiers and seized a dam to stop water payments to the United States, in a sign of growing conflict over increasingly scarce resources.
Experts are warning that existing water safety rules are not suitable to a world where wildfires destroy more residential areas than in the past.
In recent decades, we’ve become aware of lots of water on Earth that’s deep under ice. In some cases, we’ve watched this nervously, as it’s deep underneath ice sheets, where it could lubricate the sheets’ slide into the sea. But we’ve also discovered lakes that have been trapped under ice near the poles, possibly for millions of years, raising the prospect that they could harbor ancient ecosystems.
Now, researchers are applying some of the same techniques that we’ve used to find those under-ice lakes to data from Mars. And the results support an earlier claim that there are bodies of water trapped under the polar ice of the red planet.
Spotting liquids from orbit
Mars clearly has extensive water locked away in the forum of ice, and some of it cycles through the atmosphere as orbital cycles make one pole or the other a bit warmer. But there’s not going to be pure liquid water on Mars—the temperatures just aren’t high enough for very long, and the atmospheric pressures are far too low to keep any liquid water from boiling off into the atmosphere.
A 6-year-old boy died in Lake Jackson, Texas, after being infected by an organism that enters the nose and travels to the brain.
One good trend in 2020 has been large technology companies almost falling over one another to make ever-bolder commitments regarding their ecological impact. A cynic might argue that just doing without most of the things they make could have a much greater impact, but Microsoft is the latest to make a commitment that not only focuses on minimizing its impact, but actually on reversing it. The Windows-maker has committed to achieving a net positive water footprint by 2030, by which it means it wants to be contributing more energy back into environment in the places it operates than it is drawing out, as measured across all “basins” that span its footprint.
Microsoft hopes to achieve this goal through two main types of initiatives: First, it’ll be reducing the “intensity” of its water use across its operations, as measured by the amount of water used per megawatt of energy consumed by the company. Second, it will also be looking to actually replenish water in the areas of the world where Microsoft operations are located in “water-stressed” regions, through efforts like investment in area wetland restoration, or the removal and replacement of certain surfaces, including asphalt, which are not water-permeable and therefore prevent water from natural sources like rainfall from being absorbed back into a region’s overall available basin.
The company says that how much water it will return will vary, and depend on how much Microsoft consumes in each region, as well as how much the local basin is under duress in terms of overall consumption. Microsoft isn’t going to rely solely on external sources for this info, however: It plans to put its artificial intelligence technology to work to provide better information around what areas are under stress in terms of water usage, and where optimization projects would have the greatest impact. It’s already working towards these goals with a number of industry groups, including The Freshwater Trust.
Microsoft has made a number of commitments towards improving its global ecological impact, including a commitment from earlier this year to become ‘carbon negative’ by 2030. Meanwhile, Apple said in July that its products, including the supply chains that produce them, will be net carbon neutral by 2030, while Google made a commitment just last week to use only energy from carbon-free sources by that same year.
In re-examining historical narratives and classical stories, these artists are creating images that speak on multiple levels to the experiences of being Black and female.
The liquid levitates, and a boat floats along its bottom side.
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After a decade of construction, the hydroelectric dam in Ethiopia, Africa’s largest, is nearly complete. But there’s still no agreement with Egypt, which calls the structure a national security threat.
In his push for economic development, Turkey’s president has flooded the archaeological gem of Hasankeyf and displaced thousands of families.
An early 20th-century federal water project irrigated the prairie to create farms and towns in eastern Montana. But it needs a $200 million overhaul.
Living conditions make it difficult to contain the virus’s spread.
Stagnant plumbing systems in emptied commercial buildings could put returning employees at risk of Legionnaire’s and other illnesses.
The reservation has more coronavirus cases per capita than any state in the country.
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Entire communities around the country face this terrifying virus without being even able to wash their hands.
“Quite honestly, one of the most disheartening things about American life is not the politics, not the incredible social division — it’s the way you make tea.”
These causes will make great use of your money or your time.
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In a 6-to-3 ruling, the court rejected arguments by a county in Hawaii and the Trump administration that only pollution discharged directly into navigable waters requires permits.
A delicate ecosystem was disrupted in the Comoros, off East Africa, when forests were cleared to make way for farmland. The consequences offer lessons for other parts of the developing world.
New research show that Beijing’s engineers appear to have directly caused the record low levels of water in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.
Immersion, even just thinking about it, is the balm we need right now.
Cases of the virus were being reported around the city and in the Police Department. “Every day I drive home, I start crying,” a nurse said.
An Interior Department official has pressed scientists to include misleading climate language—including debunked claims that increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is beneficial—into their work.