Moon Maybe Not as Old as Previously Thought
New research suggests it's 100M years younger
By Ruth Brown, Newser Staff
Posted Sep 23, 2013 6:38 PM CDT
The International Space Station can be seen as a small object in lower right of this image of the moon.   (AP Photo/Lauren Harnett - NASA)

(Newser) – No wonder the moon has such a youthful complexion (well, it vaguely resembles a teenager's spotty face)—new research suggests it isn't quite as old as previously thought. The standard theory was that the moon formed some 4.56 billion years ago, after another planet slammed into Earth. But a new analysis by a geochemist at the Carnegie Institution for Science suggests the rock is actually somewhere between 4.4 billion and 4.45 billion years old, reports

"Back in the 1970s, you couldn't distinguish between 4.45 and 4.55 billion years," says the scientist, Richard Carlson, per the LA Times. "Today, we can, and everything we are seeing suggests the 4.4 billion number." That raises "several" new questions, notes Carlson. "For example," he tells, "if the Earth was already differentiated prior to the giant impact, would the impact have blown off the primordial atmosphere that formed from this earlier epoch of Earth history?"

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
The Moon: Maybe Not as Old as Previously Thought is...
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Showing 3 of 40 comments
Sep 25, 2013 10:03 PM CDT
As the great Adam Sandler once said...WOOOOOPDEEEEE DOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
Sep 25, 2013 8:38 PM CDT
Science/evolution vs. religious/creationism.....4.5 billion years vs. 6,000 years... whats a few million centuries among friends. Especially when neither side can prove a definite date. AND who really cares.
Sep 24, 2013 5:08 AM CDT
The moon is a man made satellite from the future, sent back millions of years.