Analytical Chemistry in Space by Richard E. Wainerdi (Eds.)

By Richard E. Wainerdi (Eds.)

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In the case of the Moon, we will soon have much better information, when astronauts bring specimens back to Earth for analysis. Thus, the present Surveyor analyses provide an excellent test of our actual ability to extrapolate accurately from incomplete analyses of surface samples, of great value as we plan for the exploration of the planets. Hopefully it will be possible to relate a chemical composition measurement not just to the single sample on which it was made but also, by applying standard penological techniques, first to the particular formation on which the analysis device landed, and then more generally to the rest of the Moon (or planet) where similar-appearing areas occur.

Thus it released about 2 χ 1 0 particles into the lunar atmosphere. —include some of the constituents of the lunar atmosphere it is of most interest to study. 4 χ 1 0 more molecules to enable the vehicle to leave lunar orbit and enter Moon-Earth transfer. ) The extent to which rocket fuel contamination will affect a lunar atmospheric analysis depends on the dissipation rates of the contaminants and the time between contamination and analysis. Because there is presently a considerable uncertainty as to actual escape times (see section 12 above) predictions of what percentage of various rocket fuel constituents contamination will be present in the lunar atmosphere after some fixed release time must necessarily be uncertain.

9. Heavy hydrocarbons. There are some perhaps not widely accepted theories which postulate the presence of high-molecular-weight hydrocarbons on the lunar surface. C20) that as much as 10 g c m of such material might have been formed during the lifetime of primitive lunar atmosphere and theorized that it is now buried under many meters of meteoritic debris. C21) went a step further, considering it possible that there was a primitive hydrosphere that could have existed for 9 as long as 10 years, in which life developed as on Earth—producing a residue of heavy hydrocarbons similar to terrestrial oil and coal deposits.

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