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The Earth is actually two planets - not one

Posted on Friday, 29 January, 2016 | Comment icon 28 comments

The early Earth was involved in a massive planetary collision. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Scientists have determined that the Earth and moon are made up of material from two separate worlds.
Somewhere around 100 million years after the Earth was formed it had a run-in with another planet known as Theia, but while previous studies had suggested that the two worlds had only side-swiped one another, new research has revealed that they were most likely involved in a head-on collision.

The cataclysmic smash was so destructive that Theia was reduced to a cloud of debris which gradually merged together with the Earth to form both the moon and a single, larger planet.

The research was based on a new analysis of rock samples retrieved during the Apollo moon landings which showed an identical ratio of oxygen isotopes to materials collected on the Earth - something that shouldn't be possible if the Earth and Theia had only side-swiped one another.

"Theia was thoroughly mixed into both the Earth and the moon, and evenly dispersed between them," said UCLA geochemist Edward Young.

"This explains why we donít see a different signature of Theia in the moon versus the Earth."

Source: Red Orbit | Comments (28)

Tags: Moon, Earth, Theia

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #19 Posted by MysticStrummer on 6 February, 2016, 3:09
Coming up after the Superbowl... Theists vs Theiaists! *makes popcorn*
Comment icon #20 Posted by JesseCuster on 6 February, 2016, 14:15
Oh please. There was no "melodrama". You were rightfully and unmelodramatically called out by a total of two people for claiming that what Sitchin wrote "was coming true" when Sitchin's fantasies are nothing like what is being proposed by actual scientists. You should grow a thicker skin if you're going to be posting online.
Comment icon #21 Posted by DieChecker on 6 February, 2016, 15:02
I tend to go with the collision theory, where the Earth and the other planet collided and it was debris which formed the Moon. Due to the fact that so little heavy elements ended up on the Moon. (Or has that idea been debunked??)
Comment icon #22 Posted by Peter B on 7 February, 2016, 9:36
No, it remains very much at the core (okay, pun intended) of the Giant Impact theory.
Comment icon #23 Posted by Emma_Acid on 8 February, 2016, 16:17
I don't think you understand what Occam's Razor is.
Comment icon #24 Posted by cerberusxp on 12 February, 2016, 9:39
Plus where did the other planet originate the galaxy that collided with the spiral or the spiral?
Comment icon #25 Posted by Noteverythingisaconspiracy on 12 February, 2016, 10:21
There is no reason to think that the planet that collided with Earth didn't also come from the Solar system, so what does spiral galaxies have to do with this ?
Comment icon #26 Posted by Peter B on 12 February, 2016, 11:35
No need to involve the galaxy. Everything that happened to create the Earth-Moon system as it is today originated in the forming Solar System, which was...well let me go back a couple of steps. 1. The Solar System (that is, the Sun, the eight planets and their moons and the various dwarf planets, asteroids, comets and so on) is believed to have originated in a cloud of dust and gas which slowly coalesced, probably under the pressure of a shockwave from a nearby supernova. 2. As the cloud coalesced it began to spin, and in doing so flattened out into a disc. 3. Most material collected in the ... [More]
Comment icon #27 Posted by danielost on 14 February, 2016, 19:30
doesn't matter since the two planets were destroyed, thus life on both planets would have been destroyed. besides this is the theory of how earth got a moon.

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