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Where did Earth’s oddball ‘quasi-moon’ come from? Scientists pinpoint famed lunar crater


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Where did Earth’s oddball ‘quasi-moon’ come from? Scientists pinpoint famed lunar crater

Impact that created the asteroid also blasted out the famous Giordano Bruno crater

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Astronomers suspect an unusual near-Earth rocky object is not a typical escapee from the Solar System’s asteroid belt, but is instead a chunk of the Moon blasted into space eons ago by a spectacular impact. Now, a team of researchers has modeled what sort of lunar impact could have ejected such a gobbet of Moon and deposit it in a stable, nearby orbit. Surprisingly, only one strong candidate emerged: the asteroid strike that created the famous Giordano Bruno crater, the youngest large crater on the Moon, the group reports today in Nature Astronomy.

“The authors’ modeling techniques are solid and well established,” says geophysicist Ronald Ballouz of Johns Hopkins University. “They are able to show that ejecta from a crater the size of the Giordano Bruno … could survive for a long enough timescale in a co-orbital zone around Earth.”

Read More: ➡️ Science

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