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Space & Astronomy

Evidence of proto-planet 'Theia' found deep inside Earth's mantle

By T.K. Randall
November 2, 2023 · Comment icon 9 comments

Impact that brought about the formation of the Earth's Moon.
Has evidence of Theia been under our feet this whole time ? Image Credit: NASA / Joe Tucciarone
The findings could not only solve the mystery of the Moon's formation, but also the mystery of two large subsurface 'blobs'.
While the exact circumstances that brought about the formation of the Moon have long been debated, today most scientists tend to subscribe to a theory known as the Giant Impact Hypothesis which suggests that the Moon formed from the debris created by a cataclysmic impact between the early Earth and a proto-planet named Theia approximately 4.5 billion years ago.

Definitively proving that this happened, however, has long proven a challenge because nobody has been able to find any direct evidence that Theia ever actually existed.

Now, though, that could be set to change thanks to a new study of two mysterious 'blobs' of material previously discovered at the bottom of the Earth's mantle near the core.

These 'blobs' are much hotter and denser than the surrounding material and for years scientists have been left scratching their heads over how they came to be there.
The answer, it turns out, might just kill two birds with one stone.

According to CalTech geodynamics researcher and study lead author Qian Yuan, these 'blobs' may in fact be the evidence of Theia that scientists have been searching for.

"Simulations of the Giant Impact suggest that at least some intact pieces of Theia's mantle may have persisted in the Earth's mantle throughout Earth's history," the study authors wrote.

While the research doesn't prove the hypothesis outright, it does add significant credence to the idea that the Moon really did form from what was left behind after Theia collided with the Earth.

Evidence of this mysterious proto-planet, it seems, may have been right beneath our feet all along.

Source: CBS News | Comments (9)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Nicolette 1 month ago
That's so funny not long ago you would be called a conspiracy theorist for believing in theia. So are we going to look back now on the experiences of the abductees who first told us about the story of theia and named the original planet and the rest of the earth history et told them about, or just adopt the name they used for it and keep calling them crazy?
Comment icon #2 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 1 month ago
What are you talking about? What has any of this got to do with UFOs and abductees?
Comment icon #3 Posted by Cho Jinn 1 month ago
That was 4B years ago - that material would not not have been processed and more evenly distributed throughout the mantle/course since then?
Comment icon #4 Posted by Earl.Of.Trumps 1 month ago
If Theia was a protoplanet, I think it is safe to say that there would be no advanced life on it. My opinion (for now) Also, if Theia had any living organisms when it crashed into planet Earth, they would surely die as a result of the collision. Also, my opinion
Comment icon #5 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 1 month ago
At that stage in the solar system's evolution planetary surfaces were still molten, so no life of any kind anywhere in the solar system.   A collision with enough power to merge two planets, and throw off enough material to form the moon would make ground zero of a hydrogen bomb detonation look like a gnat's fart. None of the non-existent life forms could possibly survive.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Piney 1 month ago
That's funny. I remember reading about the Theia theory in the 80s in one of the Edmund Sc.NASA astronomy books And it wasn’t a "abductee" who came up with the theory. It was a "scientist". 
Comment icon #7 Posted by lightly 1 month ago
    I can’t understand how the ‘earth’ could have remained in orbit around the sun.    Unless maybe it ended up in a new orbit. ???   When looking at the size of some craters on the moon..  I don’t really understand how the moon stayed in it’s orbit around the earth.   But, it obviously did I guess.       I’ve always questioned the prevailing ideas that orbits are only influenced by the two forces of momentum and gravity. ?    That seems to be to be an extremely delicate balancing act?!    It seems space might be more resistant/constraining than it looks. ?
Comment icon #8 Posted by Nicolette 28 days ago
I guess we had different introductions. I first heard of theia from what was presented as a history of modern earth as recounted by a person who claimed aliens told them. It was heavily scoffed at and called ridiculous based on the source... and here we are now with scientists calling it a "theory" and proving it... so weird how that whole story lost it's origination point, but to be fair I stumbled upon that in the 90s, and google dated the book you mentioned to 1940 so the person probably just read the same book. Also this book seems really philosophical to be scientific literature... based ... [More]
Comment icon #9 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 27 days ago
If it's from the 1940s you aren't. The massive-impact hypothesis wasn't suggested until 1974, after the analysis of Apollo material. The name Theia comes from Greek mythology... Theia is the Titan that gives birth to the moon god Selene. Interesting that your supposed aliens should chose a name for a protoplanet that comes from Greek mythology don't you think? Also interesting is that you have made a lot of claims and haven't backed any of them up with any source or supporting evidence?

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