Scientists simulated with supercomputers how the moon could have been born

Scientists are reconstructing how the moon was formed

A monstrous impact occurred over 4 billion years ago That would make up the moon. The most supported theory is that An object in space the size of Mars What do scientists call it? Thea hit Earth a few million years after its formation. A new study has found that this giant impact may have quickly put the moon into orbit around the Earth rather than creating a debris disk that gradually formed the moon over time.

Experts argue This theory in new research, where they conducted a very detailed computer simulation It was established by the Institute for Computational Cosmology at Durham University. this new”Instant Satellite Scenario‘, means that the proto-moon was less molten during its formation and may indicate that much of it formed immediately after a giant impact on Earth.

This theory is for faster formation as well He may suggest a different interior composition of the moon which may provide an explanation Some of the strange Earth-like features seen in the moon samples.

The Moon is the only natural satellite of the Earth and orbits the planet at an average distance of about 385,000 km (Reuters / Borja Suárez)

Previously it was assumed that this effect ejected a field of debris from which the Moon gradually formed. One of the results of this was that The Moon was created primarily from a material provided by Thea rather than materials from Earth. This idea was challenged when it was discovered that lunar rocks look very similar in composition to the Earth’s mantle. The high-resolution results obtained by the remarkable computing power of the DiRAC Memory Intensive service called CosmaIt is located at Durham University in England. It showed an outer layer of the Moon rich in material from Earth.

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This formation path could help explain the similarity in isotopic composition between moon rocks brought back by Apollo astronauts and Earth’s mantle. There may also be noticeable consequences for the thickness of the lunar crust.which will allow us to further determine the type of collision that occurred,” said Vincent Ike, co-author of the research and a physicist at Durham is a statement.

The additional computational power revealed that low-resolution simulations could miss critical aspects of large-scale collisions. By using high-resolution simulations, researchers can discover features that were not available in previous studies. If a large portion of the Moon formed immediately after the giant impact, it could also mean that it melted less during formation compared to traditional theories where the Moon grew within the debris disk around the Earth. Depending on the details of the subsequent solidification, these theories should predict the various internal structures of the Moon.

A simulation of the formation of the moon was carried out using a supercomputer
A simulation of the formation of the moon was carried out using a supercomputer

A bunch of new possibilities

This opens up a whole new set of potential starting points for the Moon’s evolution. We went into this project without knowing exactly what the results of this high-resolution simulation would be. So, in addition to revealing that standard solutions can give you wrong answers, it was very exciting that the new findings could include a puzzling moon-like satellite in orbit, explained Jacob Kejris, the study’s principal investigator, published last tuesday in Astrophysical Journal Letters. The team’s simulation took into account hundreds of different impact scenarios that changed the angle and velocity of Theia’s impact, In addition to the contrast of the masses and rotation of the two colliding bodies. It also showed that a natural satellite as large as the Moon that is still forming, can live in close orbit around the Earth.

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The Moon is the only natural satellite of the Earth and orbits the planet at an average distance of about 385,000 km. With a diameter of just under 3,500 kilometers, the surface of the rocky body, dotted with craters, is one of the most recognizable objects in the sky. One orbit of our planet’s Moon takes 27.3 Earth days, which is the same amount of time it takes a satellite to rotate once on its axis. As a result, half of the moon’s surface always faces the Earth. The other half (erroneously known as the dark side of the moon, despite receiving the same amount of sunlight as the more common side) was finally first seen in 1959 when the Soviet Luna 3 probe launched a grainy array. from pictures

This orbitblocked The result of tides is the result of the Earth and Moon pulling on each other, slowing each other’s rotation. Earth’s rotation It is similarly affected by the braking effect of the moon’s gravity, Adding about 1.4 milliseconds To this day every century. At the same time, the moon is gradually moving away from our world, Addition of a few millimeters Approximately 30 centimeters of orbital distance each year. When it formed about 4.5 billion years ago, the moon was 16 times closer, and loomed about 24 times over the horizon.

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Lovell Loxley

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