Volume 94 Issue 5 | p. 29 | Concentrates
Issue Date: February 1, 2016

Isotope Ratios Clarify Moon’s Origin

Space Science: Analysis of oxygen isotopes points to a mixing of water and rocky melt between nascent Earth and the planetary body Theia when they collided to form our satellite
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Analytical SCENE
Keywords: moon, Earth, oxygen, isotopes

The making of our moon, according to a widely accepted theory, took place billions of years ago when a giant planetary body called Theia collided with a nascent Earth, producing debris that eventually became our planet’s satellite. Although scientists think the crash certainly occurred, they still debate the details: For example, is the moon primarily made of debris from Theia or from a mix of the two planetary bodies? One way to resolve these and . . .

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