NASA has big plans to bring astronauts back to the moon in 2024 and leave to send people to Mars, New research will help by providing ice water on the Mars Globe that may be less than one centimeter (2.5 centimeters) below the surface.

Water ice is the key to any potential landing site. Because there is little space on the spacecraft, all human missions to Mars need to collect what is already available for drinking water and rocket fuel production.

NASA calls this concept the use of in situ resources and is an important factor in choosing a landing location for Mars. Satellites orbiting Mars are very important to help scientists find the best locations for building the first Mars exploration station.

The annotated area of Mars in this illustration holds near-surface water ice that would be easily accessible for astronauts to dig up. The water ice was identified as part of a map using data from NASA orbiters.

The authors of the new book use data from these two spacecraft, NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and Mars Odyssey Orbiter, to find water ice that is accessible to Red Planet astronauts.

Liquid water cannot hold the thin air of Mars. At such low atmospheric pressure, it evaporates from solids to gas when exposed to the atmosphere.

Mars water ice trapped underground in the entire width of the planet. This polar region explored by NASA’s Phoenix Lander, which erodes ice, and by MRO, who took many pictures of the cosmic influence of ice-digging meteors.

This rainbow-colored map shows underground water ice on Mars. Cool colors represent less than one foot (30 centimeters) below the surface; warm colors are over two feet (60 centimeters) deep. Sprawling black zones on the map represent areas where a landing spacecraft would sink into fine dust. The outlined box represents the ideal region to send astronauts for them to be able to dig up water ice.

To find ice that can be extracted by astronauts, the study authors used two thermo-sensitive instruments: the Mars climate from the MRO record and the Mars Odyssey Thermal Emission System (THEMIS) camera.

The authors compared temperatures like ice with other data, such as ice tanks discovered by radar or observed after the impact of a meteorite. Also helpful is data from the Odyssey Gamma Ray Spectrometer, which adapted for mapping water ice sheets.

As expected, all this data shows full ice water at all poles of Mars and mid-latitudes. But, this map shows shallow deposits that might be more likely to study in future planning missions.

Although there are many places on Mars that scientists want to visit, there are practical landing sites for astronauts.

Most scientists have settled in latitudes north and south, where there are more sun and warmer temperatures than at the poles. But, there is a large preference for landings in the northern hemisphere, which generally have lower elevations and provide more atmosphere to delay the landing of a spacecraft.

Many areas called the Arcadia Planitia are the most attractive destinations in the northern hemisphere. This map is very blue and purple in this region and represents water ice, which is less than 30 centimeters below the surface. warm colors more than two meters. The black area scattered on the map represents the area where the landing craft will sink into the particle.

JPL creates and manages the Mars Climate Sounder. THEMIS built and operated by Arizona State University in Tempe. Gamma-ray spectrometers built and operated by the University of Arizona in Tucson.