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'By far the greatest danger of Artificial Intelligence is that people conclude too early that they understand it'

 

Eliezer Yudkowsky

Earth-Moon Smashup Happened Earlier Than Thought

RATE THIS! +21
Posted in Science on 15th Jun, 2014 01:52 AM by AlexMuller

Previously, scientists had pinned down the moon's birth at 100 million years after the solar system formed 4.568 billion years ago. New findings push back the moon's birth date to just 40 million years after the solar system coalesced, researchers said yesterday (June 10) here at the annual Goldschmidt geochemistry conference.

 

The leading theory for how the moon was born suggests it originated from a Mars-size body slamming into Earth. Though the collision was only a glancing blow, the giant impact destroyed the impacting planet, called Theia. The resulting debris became the moon, though Earth also contributed some rubble. 
 
To calculate when this giant impact took place, geochemists Guillaume Avice and Bernard Marty analyzed xenon gas trapped in tiny bubbles in ancient quartz from South Africa and Australia. The quartz bubbles from South Africa and Australia retain the chemical signature of Earth's atmosphere from when the bubbles formed, like a time capsule from 3.4 billion and 2.7 billion years, respectively.
 
The amount of xenon isotopes (atoms with different numbers of neutrons) in the quartz is different than it is today. There's more xenon in the older rocks, because the noble gas has slowly escaped into space since the Earth's atmosphere formed. 

Tags: MoonEarthSpaceastronomy

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-06-15
+1
Interesting- with any new way that we can measure or analyse, we find out more and more about things that we believe that all is known already- Moon is one example and here the time of its origin just changed quite a lot Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-06-24
+0
The agreement, annnuoced Wednesday, gives Emanuel a victory that evaded former MayorRichard Daley, who often boasted of his efforts to make Chicago the nation's greenest city. David Baer proble9me1nak tekinti, hogy az egyhe1zakkal kapcsolatos df6nte9st a parlament, nem pedig a ffcggetlen bedrf3se1g hozta meg. The Friday Megapanel: We’re joined by Guy Benson, Krystal Ball, and Toure. Recently,a0a 20-year-old apartment maintenance worker confessed to killing a child who resided at the same Canton, Georgia complex. The pecuniary jurisdiction of the magistrates are again set out in the relevant Act; that is, the Magistrates Court Act, Cap.10, Laws of Kenya. Reply


 

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