05 Aug '11, 9am

Earth once had two moons, claim US astronomers, until they smashed together in the 'big splat'

WASHINGTON - In a spectacle that might have beguiled poets, lovers and songwriters if only they had been around to see it, Earth once had two moons, astronomers now think. But the smaller one smashed into the other in what is being called the "big splat". The result: Our planet was left with a single bulked-up and ever-so-slightly lopsided moon. The astronomers came up with the scenario to explain why the moon's far side is more hilly than the one that is always facing Earth. The theory, outlined on Wednesday in the journal Nature, comes complete with computer model runs showing how it might have happened and an illustration that looks like the bigger moon getting a pie in the face. This all supposedly happened about 4.4 billion years ago, long before there was any life on Earth. The moons themselves were said to be young, formed about 100 million years earlier when a gian...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/World/EDC110805-0000025/Earth-...

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