Just like on Earth, water will be a crucial resource on the moon. Transporting water and other goods from Earth to the moon’s surface is expensive. Finding natural resources, such as water ice, on the moon could help expedite lunar exploration. The LCROSS mission will search for water, using information learned from the Clementine and Lunar Prospector missions.
By going to the moon for extended periods of time, a new generation of explorers will learn how to work safely in a harsh environment. A lunar outpost is a stepping stone to future exploration of other bodies in our solar system. The moon also offers many clues about when the planets were formed.