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View Full Version : Why Does the “Man in the Moon” Face Earth?



Fraser
2012-Mar-12, 10:20 PM
When we look at the Moon, we see these amazing variations of light and dark. And depending on your orientation on Earth, you might see the famous “Man in the Moon”, or maybe the “Rabbit in the Moon”. The darker areas are known as maria, smooth lava fields created by ancient volcanic eruptions on the [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/94110/why-does-the-man-in-the-moon-face-earth/)

swampyankee
2012-Mar-13, 01:50 AM
Fraser's thread title is asking for a less-than-serious answer.

"Why Does the “Man in the Moon” Face Earth?"

a) If he didn't, we couldn't see him

b) If he didn't he'd be the "Moon in the Moon."

crosscountry
2012-Mar-13, 04:31 PM
This article presupposes that the moon was solid when the gravity of Earth started acting on it. That is inconsistent with current beliefs that the moon formed form a collision. The moon would have been a liquid magma ocean for some time after the impact until it cooled. Normally things cool into spheres given enough gravity, which the moon has. So, while the moon would indeed point one side towards us, as the article suggests, it's not really a new result.

A cool result would be to explain why the moon has the shape that it does. Some hypotheses exist, such as this one, (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v476/n7358/full/nature10289.html) but don't account for all of the observations.