(ORDO NEWS) — The moon may have formed as a result of the collision of the Earth with the hypothetical planet Theia about 4.5 billion years ago. British scientists came to this conclusion, according to the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
Researchers believe that the moon is composed of debris that emerged after the collision of our planet with Theia. Scientists emphasize that the results of their research are not conclusive evidence of the origin of the moon, but they represent a promising stage in understanding how the Earth’s satellite could have formed.
Theia is a hypothetical planet, formed 4.6 billion years ago, like other planets in the solar system, which could have been similar in size to Mars. The hypothetical planet is named after Teia – one of the Titanid sisters in ancient Greek mythology, the mother of Helios, Eos and Selena (the goddess of the moon).
Earlier it became known that one of the asteroids in the same orbit with Mars may well be a fragment that broke away from the Moon in due time. Asteroid 101429 (1998 VF31), in question, belongs to the category of Trojan asteroids – small celestial bodies that have fallen into gravitationally balanced regions in the near-solar orbits of planets – the Lagrange points. They are located 60 degrees in front of and behind the planets.
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