A giant asteroid impact altered the balance of the Moon forever - Part I

A giant asteroid impact altered the balance of the Moon forever - Part I

Updated on April 13, 2022 15:52 PM by Dhinesh

An ancient collision

The Moon was not the same as it went through a giant collision in ancient times. This massive collision resulted in a contrasting impact on the two sides of the lunar surface and its mantle.One side of the Moon is filled with more craters than the other side. The researchers finally understood that it was the work of a giant asteroid.The Moon’s mantle was rocked when a giant asteroid rammed into it some 4.3 billion years ago. It is mentioned in a new study.

The presence of craters 

The new study states that more than 9000 visible craters are there, which has caused the blemish on the Moon. These impacts have occurred over the billions of years.The presence of craters is mainly because of the tremendous amounts of meteors, asteroids, and comets impacting the satellite's surface. According to the International Astronomical Union, the visible craters are not evenly distributed across the lunar surface.

Add Block

The far side of the lunar surface - 7

There is this far side of the Moon that one cannot see from the Earth because the natural satellite is tidally locked to our planet.The side which is always far away from the Earth and not visible has a much higher number of craters than the visual side of Earth. The Moon takes equal time to rotate Earth as it orbits it.The side of the Moon, which is visible from Earth, has more of a lunar Maria.

Introduction to lunar maria - 10

Now, lunar maria means a great extent of solid lava, which people can see from the surface of Earth. The lunar Maria can be seen from planet Earth through the naked eye.The lunar maria on the visible side of the Moon has caused the dark patches on the Moon. These visible dark patches could be seen from the Earth with naked eyes.

Add Block

The trick of the lava fields - 12

The trick is that the lunar maria has covered up the craters on the visible side of the Moon. However, from Earth, the invisible side of the Moon has no lunar maria, giving way to more visible craters.The researchers and scientists have already got on with the fact that lunar maria were formed after a massive impact around 4.3 billion years ago. These enormous impacts of the asteroids in ancient times created the Aitken basin at the South Pole.

Add Block

The Aitken basin in the South Pole - 15

The Aitken Basin at the South Pole, of the lunar surface, has a maximum width of sixteen hundred miles which is two thousand five hundred and seventy-four kilometers.The Aitken Basin of the Moon has a maximum depth of 5.1 miles which is 8.2 kilometers. The formation of the Aitken Basin is evidence of the second-largest confirmed impact on our Solar System.The researchers are still confused about why the lunar nearside is filled with lava fields. However, Aitken Basin is still an enormous pit on the lunar surface, visible from our planet.

The SPA impact on the lunar mantle - 19

The SPA or the South Pole Aitken Basin impact has created a unique circumstance in the mantle of the Moon. The layer of the magma inside the crust was heavily affected only on the near side of the Moon.The massive impacts which conjured pits like the SPA scientifically create lots of heat inside the natural satellite. 

add Block

What's New : Science