Geological clock reveals moon’s age

Geological clock reveals moon’s age

Geological clock reveals moon’s age

Written by Staff Writer

03 Apr, 2014 | 3:51 pm

In a new research, scientists have estimated the birth date of Moon to 4.470 billion years. It means that our planet’s only natural satellite was formed some 4.470 billion years, nearly 100 million years after the start of the solar system.

Scientists suggest that a gigantic collision between a Mars-size object named Theiaand Earth might have been the cause of formation of the Moon.

Apart from creating our satellite, the event is also believed to have marked the final phase of Earth’s core formation from molten metals sinking to the centre from a super hot surface.

The new study is based on the analysis of the the growth history of the Earth-like planets from 259 simulations. The scientists discovered a relationship between the time the Earth was impacted by a Mars-sized object to create the Moon and the amount of material added to the Earth after that impact.

Augmenting the computer simulation with details on the mass of material added to the Earth by accretion after the formation of the Moon revealed a relationship that works much like a clock to date the Moon-forming event.

This is the first ” geologic clock” in early solar system history that does not rely on measurements and interpretations of the radioactive decay of atomic nuclei to determine age.

From these geochemical measurements, the newly established clock dates the Moon to 95 plus and minus 32 million years after the beginning of the solar system .

The paper has been published in the journal, Nature.

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