Monday, April 13, 2009

Looking for the Lost Planet of our Solar System.

The solar system might once have had another planet named Theia, which may have helped create our own planet's moon.

Now two spacecrafts are heading out to search for leftovers from this rumored sibling, which would have been destroyed when the solar system was still young.

"It's a hypothetical world. We've never actually seen it, but some researchers believe it existed 4.5 billion years ago — and that it collided with Earth to form the moon," said Mike Kaiser, a NASA scientist at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland.

Theia is thought to have been about Mars-sized. If the planet crashed into Earth long ago, debris from the collision could have clumped together to form the moon. This scenario was first conceived by Princeton scientists Edward Belbruno and Richard Gott.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20090413/sc_space/thesearchforthesolarsystemslostplanet

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