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Author Topic: What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?  (Read 8292 times)

Gerry Fraser

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« on: 18/04/2008 16:40:27 »
Gerry Fraser asked the Naked Scientists:
We hear of the catastrophe which could occur if for example an asteroid hits the Earth in 2036, but what if it hit the moon, could that be disastrous for the Earth?
What do you think?


 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #1 on: 18/04/2008 16:54:12 »
I wouldn't think it would have that much effect here on Earth. Any rocks that were thrown up and headed towards us would probably burn up in the atmosphere.
 

Offline syhprum

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #2 on: 18/04/2008 18:32:40 »
Not very much unless it was huge it happens all the time.
 

Offline Madidus_Scientia

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #3 on: 19/04/2008 10:29:54 »
Not unless its so massive or energetic it knocks the moon into an unstable orbit so that it will eventually collide with us, or it knocks it away so that it messes up the tidal effects the moon has on the earth
 

Offline rosalind dna

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #4 on: 19/04/2008 11:39:01 »
I think that if an asteroid collided into the Moon then yes the
Earth would be affected a lot as it's cycles of the Moon that
controls our tides and seasons as well as being the Earth's
satellite to the Sun.
 

lyner

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #5 on: 19/04/2008 21:26:41 »
Yes but it's all a matter of how big and how fast the asteroid is. The effect on us would be a lot less if anything hit the Moon than if it hit the Earth.
 

Offline rosalind dna

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #6 on: 19/04/2008 22:44:06 »
Yes Sophie I agree with you. I had thought of that as well.
 

lyner

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #7 on: 19/04/2008 23:17:24 »
It could provide some crackin photographs!
 

Offline LeeE

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #8 on: 23/04/2008 16:38:54 »
http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2006/13jun_lunarsporadic.htm

:)

It's very unlikely that there'd be much affect here on Earth from even a very large asteroid hitting the Moon.  The Moon has been hit by many very large asteroids, proved by the many visible craters that cover it (even more so on on far-side than near-side) and the fact that the Moon is still here after all that indicates that they haven't had much effect upon the it, apart from re-arranging it's surface features a bit.  However, anything big enough to have more than a superficial effect upon the Moon will have a significant gravitational affect upon all of the inner planets, quite apart from the effects of a collision i.e. change of Moon's mass and resultant massive amounts of debris.

As the moon is slowly spiralling out from the Earth anyway, a large asteroid (as opposed to planetesimal+) collision  is likely to only speed things up or slow things down a little bit.  We'd probably get a bumper crop of meteorites:)
 

Offline chris

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #9 on: 08/05/2008 08:47:24 »
Great answers; thanks.
 

blakestyger

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #10 on: 10/05/2008 13:59:12 »
Asteroid hits the Moon - not many dead.
 

lyner

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #11 on: 11/05/2008 23:29:01 »
Proportional to the size, it's more likely to hit Earth than the Moon. A 'big' strike (here) could cause an extinction event. As you say "not many dead" on the Moon.
 

Offline science_guy

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #12 on: 12/05/2008 00:06:49 »
so many dust particles lost... what a travesty...   [V]
 

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What would happen if an asteroid hit the moon?
« Reply #12 on: 12/05/2008 00:06:49 »

 

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