(CNN) - NASA officials say they have definitive proof of water on the surface of the moon.
The scientists said the ice deposits might be ancient.
The discovery was confirmed thanks to data from NASA's Moon Mineralogy Mapper.
Most of the water is located in shadows of craters that are near the poles which, because of the tilt of the moon, never see the sun.
Water has previously been detected within the moon, but water at the moon's surface would be "accessible as a resource for future expeditions to explore and even stay on the moon, and potentially easier to access than the water detected beneath the moon's surface," NASA said.
Researchers will now focus on the ice and determine how it got there, which will be part of future missions.
Findings on this matter are published in the August edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.