The size of the moon is shrinking...what is the reason?

2024-02-07 2024-02-07T08:19:47Z
ندى ماهر عبدربه
ندى ماهر عبدربه
صانع مُحتوى

Weather of Arabia - A new scientific study from the US space agency NASA revealed that “lunar earthquakes” and landslides resulting from the high level of cold in the lunar South Pole region caused a gradual contraction of the moon’s interior, and the study indicates that the moon’s circumference has contracted by about 46 meters over millions of years. The past years, which is a large number in geological terms, but not enough to cause any ripple effect on the Earth or its tidal cycles, according to the researchers.

The shrinking moon...a study reveals sudden seismic activity

According to the American newspaper "Washington Post", lunar geologist Tom Watters, author of the study, indicates that the moon is not geologically dead as many think, but rather it is a seismically active body, and Watters explains, saying:

“As the Moon cools, it shrinks and the interior volume changes, requiring the crust to adapt to this change in a global contraction, contributed by tidal forces as they do on Earth.”

What is the effect of the shrinking moon on earthquakes?

In studies dating back to the Apollo era, more than 50 years ago , astronauts installed seismometers on the near side of the moon's surface to monitor earthquakes. The strongest shallow earthquake occurred near the South Pole, which is close to the landing points for the Artemis 3 mission. NASA , scheduled for 2027.

Despite its static exterior, the Moon still has a hot interior, making it seismically active. Scientist Tom Watters and his team confirmed that the last powerful earthquake was linked to seismically active faults that arose as the Moon contracted, prompted by natural changes in the temperature of its molten core. Watters stated that:

“Lunarquakes differ from terrestrial earthquakes in several key respects. They can last longer on the Moon, sometimes hours, due to the Moon’s weaker gravity, making the quake much stronger than one that occurs on Earth.”

How much does a shrinking moon affect Earth's population?

Scientists are looking forward to exploring the south pole of the moon , as they believe that the craters there may contain frozen water, which could contribute to future missions. Regarding the effect of the moon’s contraction on planet Earth, the study indicated that the contraction is occurring at a very slow pace, estimated at about 150 Only feet over the past hundreds of millions of years, which means that humans may not notice any change in their lives. Regarding the effect on the tides, study co-author Nicholas Schmer of the University of Maryland believes that the Moon's mass remains the same, so it is The tides will likely not be affected "in any significant way." However, the study shows that the shrinking size of the Moon may affect plans for humans on its surface in the long term.

Read also:

Full moon calendar for the year 2024, in which we will see 12 full moons, including 4 supermoons

What if the moon disappears?


Sources:

elmarada

skynewsarabia

This article was written originally in Arabic and is translated using a 3rd party automated service. ArabiaWeather is not responsible for any grammatical errors whatsoever.
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