A mysterious space gel has been found on the Moon by the Chinese lunar rover, Yutu-2. This, right here, is the headline I always pictured writing right before some strange alien virus starts taking over the world.
The team made the discovery back in July when it was investigating an impact crater. The rover was about to enter a nap mode which helps protect to rover from radiation and high temperatures when the Chang’e-4 Team, the ground operations crew, noticed something shining in the distance. After some discussion with the lunar scientific team the decision was made to postpone the nap session to explore the strange sight.
With assistance from the on-board cameras the team approached the material and focused on the space gel with its Visible and Near-Infrared Spectrometer.
After this, the information is scant, to say the least. The material has been described as: “gel-like” and having an “usual color” but that’s about it. Unfortunately the Chinese team has yet to release any additional details including the results of the scans nor have they mentioned any plans to release details in the future.
The space gel has understandably caused a fair measure of buzz since its discovery was leaked. Scientists around the world who have been following the Yutu-2 mission believe the space gel could be melted glass from a meteorite impact or a similar high speed event.
As reported on space.com however, this isn’t the first time a strange substance has been discovered on the moon. During Apollo 17, geologist Harrison Schmitt discovered an orange soil near the mission landing site. It was later concluded that the soil was from a volcanic eruption a little over 3 billion years ago.
For now it seems we all have to wait to find out more about the moons space gel issue. Yutu-2 will continue doing its thing up there and unless someone else sends up a cool robot to look around, we’re all at the mercy of how much the Chinese team wants to tell us.
In the meantime, if people start turning into moon-aliens because of some weird space gel moon virus, please do let us know right away!