The arrival of Apollo 11 on the moon, was the first time in history that people had set foot in the outer world. But the Earth’s only natural satellite is still relatively unknown to us after half a century, and its history and geography are still confusing – especially since it has not returned since 1972.
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All of that is expected to change over the next decade as NASA and its partners intensify new efforts to return, with the goal of staying permanently this time. With new data collection methods and new self-analysis methods, some of our old questions can get answers soon. Here are six major scientific mysteries about the moon that are still awaiting fragmentation.
Origin of the moon
“The fundamental question of how the moon is constructed, and how it relates to the Earth, is indeed the most important of all the unknown,” said Noah Petro, a research scientist at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and a Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter project scientist. “Everything else comes after that.” Thank you to Apollo 11 for giving us our first understanding of that mystery.
The mission reclaimed the moon’s crust worth 50 pounds and began decades of ‘research’ focused on studying how the moon formed and originated. “I can’t stress the importance of returning those original samples to Apollo 11,” Peter said. “They set the stage for our full understanding of the moon.”
Scientists have used it to come up with the most powerful model available: that the moon began as a sea of magma – a giant ball of molten mud – orbiting the Earth. This led to, decades later, the notion that the moon was released from Earth itself, when a massive massive object the size of Mars spewed out debris from space. Additional rock studies show the elements that make up the moon and also make up our planet, adding additional support to this view.
That is the most widely accepted hypothesis of the origin of the moon, but it is by no means complete. There is no way yet to confirm the great impact that the moon has made, and our understanding of how the sea of magma cools down on the dry, gray rock we now see is still very dark. About 10 years ago, we found evidence of water on the moon – something that is hard to reconcile with the hypothesis of impact. Getting to the bottom of the past month requires the kind of groundwork we have done to unlock world history itself.
Water on the Moon
There is water on the moon, and we are not talking about just a small spray of interstellar H2O – we are talking about soldiers and ice cubes that could just stay underground, especially on the moon’s poles. This water can be harvested to help produce a new type of spacecraft oil or used to help sustain next month’s colony.
How did all those water logs get there? No one really knows yet. Opinions range from extreme reversals that forced the indoor outflow of water to the horizon, to the effects of meteorites and bombs dropping to bring water from the atmosphere to chemical reactions caused by the solar wind. “We just don’t know,” Peter said. “And we’d really like to get it.” Earthquake
There are earthquakes that occur every month – sometimes called earthquakes. Apollo seismometers of the Apocalypse seize the face measuring the earthquake from 1969 to 1977. Those data have shown us that the moon is an active body, far removed from the inanimate rock that many think it is.
We already know about a few of the factors that cause this earthquake, such as global warming, wave stress caused by gravity, and the effects of meteorites. But with such limited details, we are not entirely sure how these processes work and how the earthquake behaves properly. In addition, there is another, deeper earthquake for no apparent reason, which seems to occur more recently than others.
Peter suggests that a global network installed around the moon will be of great help in understanding the causes of all these things. Such a network can accurately pinpoint when, where, and where these events are occurring throughout the month. The 50 years of data we use now will not be enough to give us good answers.
There is a reason why we only see one side of the moon. It is well locked, which means that one side of it is facing the Earth. This is not uncommon for the months in our solar system, but it is still unclear when this happens, what conditions motivate it, and how it happens. In Peter’s mind, the paradox is about the origin of the moon, and what happened in the first month of history. It’s another piece of a four-billion-year-old puzzle.
This mystery is not just about the moon, either. As we continue to discover many planets and moons outside our solar system, it is important to determine what factors help to promote such factors as the closure of waves, and determine whether the earth’s potential, such as TRAPPIST-1 exoplanets, has a life-changing atmosphere.