New testing confirms Moon was created from impact with earth of 4.5 billion years ago
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
6/6/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
New research published in the journal Science may provide proof that the Moon formed when the early Earth and a separate proto-planet body collided over 4.5 billion years ago.
A German research team is set to announce their findings during the June 8-13 Goldschmidt geochemistry conference in California.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Researchers from the University of Goettingen in Germany, led by Dr. Daniel Herwartz, will present these findings at the June 8-13, 2014 Goldschmidt geochemistry conference in Sacramento California.
Many scientists believe that the Moon formed after an impact between the Earth and a similar sized astronomical body, now dubbed Theia, but a lack of concrete evidence was leading some scientists to doubt that theory.
"It was getting to the stage where some people were suggesting that the collision had not taken place," he said in an interview with the BBC.
"But we have no discovered small differences between the Earth and the Moon. This confirms the giant impact hypothesis."
The original theory used measurements of the level of oxygen, titanium, silicon and other isotopes from meteorites, and suggested that the Moon was primarily made up from material from Theia. Herwartz and his team used more refined techniques from samples taken by NASA during the Apollo missions, and his findings suggest the Moon may be composed of up to 50% material from Earth, though he notes, this will need to be confirmed.
Dr. Mahesh Anand from The Open University said that even though the research is "exciting," the scientific community must be cautious.
"We have to be cautious about representativeness of these rocks of the entire Moon, and so further analysis of a variety of lunar rocks is required for further confirmation," he said.
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