July 21, 1969, humanity made itsfirst steps on the moon. Within a few hours of being on the lunar surface, the Apollo 11 crew collected and delivered to the Earth more than 20 kilograms of lunar soil samples. And even half a century later, these samples can still surprise. For example, quite recently scientists from the Institute of Geology and Mineralogy of the University of Cologne made a discovery concerning the age of the satellite of our planet. And the moon turned out to be much older than previously thought.
How the moon was formed
For scientific reasons, the moon was formed inthe result of a gigantic collision between a planetary body the size of Mars and the ancient Earth. Over time, the Moon grew out of a cloud of matter that burst into Earth orbit after a collision. The newborn moon was covered by a magmatic ocean, which, as it cooled, formed various types of rocks.
These breeds “recorded” the formation information.The moon, and they can still be found on the lunar surface, - says Dr. Maxwell Tiemens, a researcher at the University of Cologne and lead author of the study. Such observations are no longer possible on Earth, since our planet has been geologically active for a long time, and the Moon has "frozen" in that state and gives us a unique opportunity to study the planetary evolution.
Lunar samples, thanks to which it was possible to calculate the real age of the moon
How to determine the age of the moon
Scientists from the University of Cologne in theirStudies have used the relationship between the rare elements of hafnium, uranium and tungsten, which are part of the lunar samples in order to understand the rate of melting of these elements. There is a reaction of the decay of elements and they disintegrate at different rates depending on the age of the rock. The longer - the breed is older.
See also: What happens if the moon disappears?
Thanks to unparalleled measurement accuracy,The study revealed the present age of the satellite of our planet. Therefore, scientists without problems, by placing the samples in the melting chamber, were able to calculate when what we now call the lunar samples began to form. Thus, and managed to find out the real age of the moon.
How old is the moon?
Earlier studies indicated thatThe moon was formed approximately 150 million years after the formation of the Solar System, but thanks to new data it became known that the Moon most likely appeared 100 million years earlier, that is, 50 illion years after the formation of the Solar System or 4.51 billion years ago. . As scientists say, determining the age of the moon is important for understanding how and at what time the Earth was formed, as well as how it developed at the very "beginning of its path."
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