How was the moon born?  The hypnotic and explosive simulation of the impact between the Earth and Theia paves the way for new hypotheses among scientists - I videos


For decades, scientists around the world have been wondering about origins and how the moon. One of the most popular theories among scholars argues that the only natural satellite of the Land has formed 4.5 billion years ago following theimpact between the Earth and Theia, a planetoid with dimensions similar to those of Mars. Following the impact, a cloud of debris would have been created that would have melted over the course of months, or perhaps years, going to compact and form the Moon we know today and which we see by looking up at the sky. But the details of the hypothetical collision between Theia and Earth remain a mystery. During the Apollo missions, however, the astronauts identified rocks that, in terms of composition, had many similarities to those on Earth. But with the passage of time and technological development, more and more possibilities have developed to study and do research on the birth of the Moon, also opening the way to possible new hypotheses. According to a recent study by researchers fromInstitute for Computational Cosmology of the Durham Universitycarried out in collaboration with NASA, paved the way for a new hypothesis. The Moon could have formed in a much shorter period of time, that is, over hours and not months or years, following the collision between Earth and Theia. The team of researchers used special computers to simulate hundreds of different possible impacts between the two bodies. From the video simulations emerge fascinating animations of two suspended objects, which wrap around each other in a dance that seems to produce incandescent lava.

The researchers concluded that the Moon may be made up of far more Earth material than previously assumed, especially in the outermost states. Furthermore, this new hypothesis would suggest that the Moon may only have a partially melted core, thus explaining why its outermost layer is “thin” and why its orbit is inclined. “We entered this project not knowing exactly what the results of these high-resolution simulations would be,” said Dr. Jacob Kegerreisresearcher ofAmes Research Center of NASA and lead author of the article published on The Astrophysical Journal Letters. Vincent Ekeresearcher at Durham University and co-author of the article, in an official note, reiterated the importance of research on the origins of the formation of the satellite: “The more discoveries we accumulate on how the Moon was born, the more we discover details on the evolution of our Earth. “.

Video: NASA / Durham University / Jacob Kegerreis

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