Skip to comments.Planets Around Planets?
Posted on 06/05/2006 7:32:33 PM PDT by KevinDavis
June 5, 2006 | Evidence continues to mount that planets can form around very-low-mass objects. In fact, planets might even form around objects that are so low in mass that they themselves could be considered "planets."
The latest results, reported at this week's American Astronomical Society meeting in Calgary, Alberta, come from groups led by Ray Jayawardhana (University of Toronto, Canada) and Subhanjoy Mohanty (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics).
(Excerpt) Read more at skyandtelescope.com ...
||This doesn't bode well for Democratic Underground.|
Unless the orbitting body exerted a large gravitational pull on the object it orbitted, or was roughly the same size, wouldn't it be a moon?
Ironclad proof of the moon's origin?Did earth and moon "coaccrete" at the same time? That is, did two clouds of debris simultaneously collect and coalesce into two rough spheres, which then began orbiting about a common center of gravity? Or, perhaps the earth and moon were once a single mass that ultimately fissioned due to the gravitational tugging of a passing massive object. If either of these scenarios were correct, earth and moon would have similar bulk compositions. This, however, does not seem to be the case.
by William R. Corliss
Science Frontiers #101 Sep-Oct 1995
The abundance and distribution of iron on the moon's surface, as measured by the lunar probe Clementine, indicates that the moon is richer than the earth in refractory (high melting point) compounds. The moon, therefore, almost certainly originated elsewhere, contrary to what most astronomers have long believed. Given the constraints of celestial mechanics, the most likely hypothesis postulates a colossal impact involving protoearth and the interloping protomoon. After considerable havoc, the two battered spheres settled down into their present configuration. Thus expire the two most popular theories of the moon's origin. (Lucey, Paul G., et al; "Abundance and Distribution of Iron on the Moon," Science, 268:1150, 1995)
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