Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




DEEP IMPACT
Earth Rocks In Space
By Morris Jones
Sydney, Australia (SPX) Sep 14, 2009


It's generally accepted that the Moon itself was formed when a planet-sized object collided with the early Earth, scattering material into space that later coalesced into the Moon. Both of these twin worlds now hold fragments of the original Earth and the small planet.

Rocks from space fall to Earth all the time. Meteorite fragments are so common that they turn up in jewelry. Some of these fragments have been found to come from the Moon and Mars, giving us a very cheap form of sample retrieval. They're blown off the surface of these worlds when a large object impacts the surface, creating a massive explosion.

Drifting through space for eons, they eventually come into Earth's gravity well, and fall to the ground. The most infamous example of this was a small rock found in Antarctica in 1984, which was later discovered to be Martian.

Analysis of this meteorite led to the controversial suspicion that it contained microfossils, possibly our first evidence of life beyond Earth. The Martian fossil theory has now been generally discredited, but it pointed to the importance of studying material from other worlds.

There's another side to the rocks from space story that isn't as well known. Some fragments of Earth are believed to have been deposited on other worlds.

Earth has erased most of its impact scars through erosion, but experienced a massive level of bombardment in the solar system's angry youth phase. Chunks of our home were sent into space. Scientists want to see them, and think it's worth going to the Moon to find them.

Why go looking for fragments of Earth in space when it's so easy to find Earth rocks on Earth? Because the Moon is actually a time machine.

The Earth has been into recycling for much longer than environmentalists. It recycles its water, atmosphere and rocks. It's hard to find truly old rocks on Earth because the surface has changed so much through geological processes.

A fragment of the early Earth on the Moon could have been protected from weathering for eons, especially if it has been buried. It's like visiting the Earth billions of years in the past.

This provides insight into the ancient history of the Earth and of the rest of the solar system. It could also yield evidence of some of the earliest lifeforms to inhabit Earth.

It's generally accepted that the Moon itself was formed when a planet-sized object collided with the early Earth, scattering material into space that later coalesced into the Moon. Both of these twin worlds now hold fragments of the original Earth and the small planet.

It's another reminder that collisions in space, and the transfer of fragments, is a key to understanding the universe.

Dr Morris Jones is the author of "The New Moon Race", available from Rosenberg Publishing (www.rosenbergpub.com.au)

.


Related Links
the missing link Asteroid and Comet Impact Danger To Earth - News and Science






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





DEEP IMPACT
Horse Flies And Meteors
Huntsville AL (SPX) Aug 11, 2009
Splat! There goes another bug on the windshield. Anyone who's ever driven down a country lane has seen it happen. A fast moving car, a cloud of multiplying insects, and a big disgusting mess. The next time that happens to you, instead of grossing out, try thinking of the experience as an astronomy lesson. Your car is Earth. The bugs are tiny flakes of comet dust. The carnage on your ... read more


DEEP IMPACT
NASA Concludes Robotics Tests For The Moon In Arizona

NASA Selects Target Crater For Lunar Impact

NASA Steps Closer To Power Option For Moon Habitat

MRO Spots Apollo 12 And Surveyor 3

DEEP IMPACT
Patterns In Mars Craters Give Picture Of Drying Lakes

Opportunity Update: Circling The Meteorite

Spirit Update: Examining Target 'Olive Leaf'

Goddess Of The Arctic

DEEP IMPACT
NSS Statement On HSF Executive Summary

The X-15, The Pilot And The Space Shuttle

How Far Is 'Unimaginably Far'?

Circus man ready to make 'fairy tale' come true in space

DEEP IMPACT
China Begins New Space Center Construction

China breaks ground on new space launch centre: state media

Rocket Hiccup No Jam-Up For China

China To Begin Construction Of Orbital Space Station In 2020

DEEP IMPACT
Ship Tracking From The ISS

Electronic Nose To Return From ISS

Japan sends first cargo spacecraft to ISS

Russia Approves New ISS Crew

DEEP IMPACT
Orbital Awarded New Minotaur V Mission By USAF And NASA

United Launch Alliance Atlas V Launches PAN Satellite

Russia To Start Construction Of New Space Center In 2011

Proba-2 Flies Into Its Russian Launch Site

DEEP IMPACT
Scientists wonder about planet's location

A Look Into The Hellish Cradles Of Suns And Solar Systems

New Planet Orbits Backwards

Huge New Planet Tells Of Game Of Planetary Billiards

DEEP IMPACT
Russia To Launch Weather Satellite, Revive Forecasting Capability

Indonesian Satellite Reaches Preset Orbit Despite Skewed Launch

NG Scalable Space Inertial Reference Unit Selected For BepiColombo Mission

ESA Preparing 'Sugar-Cube' Gyro Sensors For Future Missions




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement