But after a year of analysis NASA today announced that its LCROSS lunar-impact probe mission found up to a billion gallons of water ice in the floor of a permanently-shadowed crater near the moon's south pole.

That's enough, said researchers, to fill 1,500 Olympic-size swimming pools, all from one crater.

If there is ice there, it probably exists in other places on the moon as well. They also found silver, mercury, carbon monoxide and ammonia.

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