A "significant amount" of frozen water has been found on the moon, the US space agency NASA said Friday, boosting hopes of eventually setting up a permanent lunar base.
Preliminary data from a moon probe "indicates the mission successfully uncovered water in a permanently shadowed lunar crater," NASA said.
"The discovery opens a new chapter in our understanding of the moon," it added in a statement.
The data was found after NASA sent two spacecraft crashing into the lunar surface last month in a dramatic experiment to probe for water.
One rocket slammed into the Cabeus crater, near the moon's southern pole, at around 5,600 miles (9,000 kilometers) per hour. It was followed four minutes later by a spacecraft equipped with cameras to record the impact.