An expert has claimed, rather sensationally, that Earth has more than one moon – but not always.
The UK Express explains:
Dr Robert Jedicke, of the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy, believes a number of mini-moons not visible from Earth with the naked eye are in temporary orbit of our planet.
And he claims to have already conclusively identified one tiny moon that orbited us, adding: “only one is known, it’s not fictional.”
The three-metre wide baby moon called 2006 RH120 was observed in 2006 and orbited Earth for about a year before it shot back to the asteroid belt.
Dr Jedicke then used specialist computerprogrammes to calculate the likelihood that other asteroids and space rocks had been lured in by Earth’s gravity.
The paths of more than 10 million asteroids were examined before he concluded that at any time there would always be at least one tiny moon orbiting Earth.
He added: “Mini-moons are scientifically extremely interesting.
“A mini-moon could someday be brought back to Earth, giving us a low-cost way to examine a sample of material that has not changed much since the beginning of our solar system over 4.6 billion years ago.”
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