Science Questions

Why doesn't solar wind move dust on the moon?

Tue, 25th Jan 2011

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Question

Andrea Lewis asked:

I know the moon doesn't have an atmosphere therefore the dust doesn't move, but if the solar wind is strong enough to remove an atmosphere from a planet, why doesn't it move the dust on the moon???

 

Keep up the great podcasts!

 

Many thanks

 

Andrea Lewis

Hobart Tasmania Australia

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Andrea Lewis asked the Naked Scientists: Hi everyone I know the moon doesn't have an atmosphere therefore the dust doesn't move, but if the solar wind is strong enough to remove an atmosphere from a planet, why doesn't it move the dust on the moon??? Keep up the great podcasts! Many thanks Andrea Lewis Hobart Tasmania Australia What do you think? Andrea Lewis , Wed, 19th Jan 2011

The solar wind reaching Earth is high speed, charged ions, but on the range of 5-10 particles per cc.  Even though moon dust is very fine, I don't think the low density of solar wind is enough to move it.

The moon doesn't have enough gravity to hold a significant atmosphere. CliffordK, Thu, 20th Jan 2011

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