Scientists at the Milton Keynes-based university have developed an instrument which monitors the "very thin atmosphere" near the Moon's surface.
The instrument called PITMS will be carried to the moon in 2021 under Nasa's Artemis programme.
Dr Simeon Barber from the Open University said it would help investigate the concept of a natural water cycle on the Moon.
PITMS will work by studying the disturbance of the atmosphere near the Moon's surface when the landing takes place.
Dr Barber said: "The science we achieve, in particular on the availability of accessible water and oxygen, could help the international community to formulate new ways to explore the Moon and space in a more sustainable manner by using these off-planet resources."