Top 10 Surprising Facts About The Moon

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We notice the Moon lighting every night with a clear sky, but only a few of us wonder about the nature and the origin of this large mass orbiting our planet. Why did it choose our planet? What are the effects of its movement on Earth? What is it made of? How would it feel to be on the Moon? This quick list aims to answer these questions and more by presenting you with a few of the most surprising facts about Earth’s natural moon.

 

1. The origin of Earth’s natural satellite

Over the decades, there have been numerous theories regarding the origin of Earth’s natural satellite, some of them quite strange. However, the hypothesis that is currently accepted by the overwhelming majority of scientists who have studied the matter believe that the Moon is actually a fragment of our planet, Earth. This theory suggests that the satellite was formed approximately 4.5 billion years back in the wake of the collision between Earth and an object of similar dimensions to Mars. While the collision generated an inconsistent mass of debris floating on the orbit of our planet, it eventually congregated into a spherical form. The components of the Moon as well as the lower density of the satellite come to support the theory that it has originated from the upper layer of the Earth.

 

2. The dark side of the Moon

Originally, the Moon was rotating around its own axis just like the earth. However, over the course of billions and billions of years, the gravitational field emitted by the Earth caused it to decelerate up to a full stop. Therefore, only a single side of the natural satellite is viewable from our planet and it is always the same. Even though our gravitation field has an effect over the moon, it is exercised differently over several points and it does not trigger a turning movement. A similar situation happens with Pluto and Charon, the other two interlocked space bodies in our Solar System. To put it simply, while there is no actually dark side of the Moon from a broad perspective, we will never see it from our planet.

 

3. The Moon’s less known movement

Everyone knows that the Moon is orbiting around the Earth, but few are aware of the fact that it is also moving away from our planet by approximately 4 centimeters every year. Astrophysicists have found that this movement is determined by the conservation of momentum and will probably cease in approximately 50 billion years. At that point, it is estimated that the Moon’s stabilized orbit will require about 47 days to execute a full rotation around Earth. On a side note, the average duration of the current orbit requires 27.3 days to complete a full rotation.

 

4. The proportionality between the Moon and the Sun

Have you ever noticed that the dimensions of the Moon and those of the Sun appear strikingly similar from our perspective? However, science teaches us that the Moon is approximately 400 times smaller compared to the sun of our system, so how can this be? Well, even though the circumference of the sun is much larger, the distance between it and our plane is also 400 higher. This is the mother of all space coincidences and the primary reason why we perceive the dimensions of the two astral bodies as being the same.

 

5. The gravity of the natural satellite

Due to the density of the Moon and the lower dimensions, its gravity is also extremely reduced compared to Earth, namely approximately 17%. This means that even an overweight person would be able to execute spectacular jumps there and even fly around if he would equip a pair of wings. At the same time, lifting and transporting heavy items on the Moon would be incredibly easy.

 

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