The birth of the moon caused the Earth to stop dancing “breakdancing”

MOSCOW, 1 Nov – RIA Novosti. Before the birth of the moon, our planet rotates on its side, like Uranus, and only clash with the “grandmother” of the moon, Theia, and the formation of the companion of the Earth made her to change your habits and start to rotate the “normal” way, say planetary scientists in a paper published in the journal Nature.

“Our work shows that the axis of rotation of the Earth could change its position by several ways. We thought that the Earth became what it is, as a result of collision with Theia unusual angle, but it seems that the axis of our planet was tilted much later as a result of complex gravitational interactions with the Moon and the Sun,” says Matija Ciuc (Matija Cuk) of the SETI Institute in mountain view, California (United States).

“Space Yula”

The last 30 years, it was assumed that the Moon formed as a result of collision theis, protoplanetary body, with the “germ” of the Earth. The impact resulted in the ejection of matter theis and proto-Earth to space, from this material formed the Moon. Theory of collision of proto-Earth with a large celestial body explains well the mass of the moon, the low iron content therein, and other parameters.

However, this clash is a significant part of the material constituting the moon was supposed to bring hypothetical Theia. In its composition it had to be different from the Earth, as different from her most celestial bodies in the inner Solar system, including terrestrial planets and asteroids. But in fact, the composition of the Earth and moon are very similar, down to the same proportion of isotopes of many metals and other elements.

Four years ago, Chuck and his colleague Sarah Stewart has figured out how to explain that almost 100% similarity in the composition of the moon and the Earth, suggesting the hypothesis of a “planet-Yuly”. In accordance with it, the proto-Earth was spinning so quickly that she was not like a ball, and flattened “blue”, which committed one turnover in just two hours. Clash of theis this “uloy” would lead to full mixing of their matter and the birth of the moon, identical in composition to the young Earth.

The problem, later found themselves the authors of this idea lies in the fact that this hypothesis does not explain why the rotation axis of the moon is inclined by 5 degrees relative to the plane of the orbit of our planet that the Earth revolves around the Sun.

Further study of this issue showed that in the past, when the Moon was gradually removed from the Earth after her birth, the tidal forces were much to shift the axis of our planet, which put the idea of “planet-Yuly” questioned. In addition, the researchers did not have a clear explanation of how the Earth could slow down its rotation around its axis to the current values of this parameter.

Space “breakdance”

Chuck and his colleagues have found a way to “save” his theory, literally turning the Earth on its side. According to them, the newborn Earth might rotate around the Sun not in the “vertical” position, and lying on its side, like Uranus, whose rotation axis is rotated almost 90 degrees.

As shown by computer simulation of the collision of the Earth-“Yuly” and theis, the most plausible results were obtained, paradoxically, in cases where the Land originally “lay” on the side, and the Moon revolved around it is actually exactly on the equator line, which at that time passed through those points which now occupy the North and South poles.

Such “perpendicular” conguration of the moon (around the planet) and the Earth (around the Sun) led to the emergence of a very interesting gravitational interactions between the sun and two planets.

In the first stage of the interaction the Moon has acted as a kind of “gravity-rope”, which was drawn between the earth and the Sun. As a result, the speed of rotation of the planet quickly fell to almost modern values of the moment on a cosmic scale, a few million years.

When the rotation of the earth “Yuly” slowed to a certain speed, the Moon, in “support” of the Sun is gradually beginning to raise the Earth’s orbit, bringing it closer to modern tilt angle of 21 degrees. Along with the Earth moved and the Moon, down to modern orbit, inclined to the plane of the orbit of the Earth 6 degrees.

According to the PAA, this explanation of the birth of the moon is important not only for understanding the history of our planet, but also to assess the possibilities of existence of life beyond our Solar system. The existence of different ways of “tilt” axis of the planet, according to planetary scientists, increases our chances of detecting life, especially those aksamitov, which have large satellites like our moon.