The moon is us

Since we don’t have any clouds and storms to think about, I thought I would think about the moon for you.  Here is a fragmentary view from yesterday morning through some Cirrus:

Have any thoughts yet?

Well, here is a surprise that’s been around for a few years but I just found out about it:

The moon is a piece of the earth!

Yep, “Theia”, another planet whose exact size is unknown, COLLIDED with the earth about 3.5 billion years ago! That, my fiend, is the leading theory for the moon’s origin; this from the November 23rd issue of Science:  Science-2012–1006-1

I can’t post more beyond these newsy pages from Science because Science is not yet apart of the Open Access Movement where you can learn things from journal content for free!  Imagine!  Besides, on the second page there is an advertisement for a vacation in June in Iceland, in case you get too hot here.

But, after that diversion, and thinking of Theia (nice name for a girl, BTW), think of the damage!  The shaking!

How are we still in orbit? Where’s the crater? (Must be pretty damn big!)

Why would you think such a crazy thing in the first place? After all, as advised in this Disney-produced proper musical ambience and skit (Extraordinary Claims);  EXTRAORDINARY CLAIMS require EXTRAORDINARY PROOF!


So where’s the proof?

Its in the isotopes.  Amazingly, beyond even Ripley’s Strangely Believe It, much of the isotope composition of the moon is identical with the earth, not like those from meteorites and stuff like that.  So, there you have it, though there are some unanswered questions yet.  Apparently, it got so hot at the collision interface that everything melted back together, no crater

If it was to happen again, I hope it doesn’t happen during a bowl game (teevee viewing guidance here), since I wouldn’t want to miss the story in case it was played down due to an important upset, as here from an old Seattle Times mention of an asteroid that looked like it might collide with earth.   At least this news was on the front page.  Gee, if it had happened, maybe we’da got us a new moon to look at!


By Art Rangno

Retiree from a group specializing in airborne measurements of clouds and aerosols at the University of Washington (Cloud and Aerosol Research Group). The projects in which I participated were in many countries; from the Arctic to Brazil, from the Marshall Islands to South Africa.