The moon formed as a result of a collision known as the Giant Impact or the Big Whack, scientists figure.
It went like this:
A giant Mars-sized object hit Earth 4.6 billion years ago shortly after the birth of the sun & the solar system. A cloud of vaporized rock was kicked up a mix of Earth & the other object & went into orbit around Earth.
The cloud cooled & condensed into a ring of small, solid bodies, which then gathered together, forming the moon.
Each day, though not at the same time, the moon comes up in the East & goes down in the West much like the sun & other stars & for the same reason Earth rotates, on its axis, toward the East, pulling celestial objects into view & then forcing them to slip away.
The moon also makes an orbital trip around Earth once every 29.5 days. In the sky, this gradual movement is eastward, though it’s not perceptible during any given observing session.
The moon is about 27% the size of Earth & far less massive.
Gravity on the moon is only about 1/6 of that on Earth.
If you drop a rock on the moon, it falls more slowly & astronauts can hope much higher.
If you weigh 150 pounds on Earth, you’d weigh 25 pounds on the moon.
The moon is moving away from the Earth.
Each year, the moon steals some of Earth’s rotational energy & uses it to propel itself about 1.6 inches higher in its orbit.
Researchers say that when it formed about 4.6 billion years ago, the moon was about 14,000 miles from Earth.
It’s now more than 280,000 miles, or 450,000 kilometers away.
Meanwhile, Earth’s rotation rate is slowing down & our days are getting longer & longer. Want to know more facts about the moon? don’t forget to check this video!