Most people know that the moon's gravitational influence has an effect on the tides on Earth, but some scientists also believe that the presence of the moon played an important role in making Earth habitable to begin with. The interplay between the Earth and the moon mirrors events that occurred throughout the early solar system, as a Mars-sized object may have hit the Earth, sending some of the mantle into orbit that soon cooled into the moon. Over time, the relationship between the Earth and the moon may well have assisted the advent of life.Know More
The flow of the oceanic tides facilitates the movement of heat from the equator north and south to the poles. Without those tides, it is possible that climate changes ranging from ice ages to glacial periods would not be as extreme. As they happened, the glacial phases may have helped speed up migrations of plant and animal species that caused life to spread.
Tidal heat transfer may also have made climatic fluctuations less extreme, so research is still underway to determine what actually took place over lengthy periods of time. If life came into being around hydrothermal vents deep in the oceans, then the role of the tides was likely minor, but if life began in the tidal waters, then the moon's role would have been much more significant.Learn more about Our Moon
According to the Argonne National Laboratory, a human being weighs approximately one-sixth as much on the moon as he does on Earth. If an individual weighs 180 pounds on Earth, that weight is converted to 30 pounds on the moon.Full Answer >
The moon doesn't produce its own light, but it does reflect enough of the sun's light to cast a glow onto the Earth. The moon reflects so much light that it can even be seen during the day, during certain months.Full Answer >
The phases of the Moon are changes in the appearance of the Moon relative to the position of the Earth and the Sun. As the Moon travels through its monthly orbit, varying amounts of the side facing the Earth are illuminated by the light of the Sun. As the ratio of illuminated surface to shadow changes, it creates different lunar phases.Full Answer >
The moon appears bright because the side visible on Earth reflects the light from the sun. As the moon and the Earth move around their respective orbits, different portions of the moon are visible to people on Earth, depending on the angle at which the light hits the moon and reflects back to Earth. The moon reflects back about 12 percent of the light from the sun that hits it.Full Answer >