Can the moon collide with the earth? This says science

A collision between the Moon and the Earth would undoubtedly be disastrous for life on this planet, and could even pass as the story of a science fiction movie. But what does science say about it, could the Earth really collide with the Moon?

According to the plot of the movie called Moonfall, a strangely massive and mysterious force throws the moon out of its orbit causing its inevitable fall towards Earth. The result is easier to imagine; An imminent collision between both cosmic bodies, but what are the odds that this is possible. Science answers the question posed by the film.

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Can the moon collide with the earth?

Although our reasoning, based on basic physics, leads us to believe that the Moon could collide with the Earth if we applied a mysterious force on it in the direction of the planet, the truth is that it does not work that simple.

If a force 50 times greater than Earth’s gravitational field were used to pull the moon toward it, it wouldn’t be enough to move the satellite or so close to us that it would fall directly to Earth. The only thing that will happen is that the moon will change its orbit but without any dangerous approach to the planet.

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To understand why, it is first necessary to know that both bodies do not move independently of each other, but fall within the system of orbital mechanics. That is, they are connected by their gravitational fields and affect each other.

In this sense, if the Moon is pushed toward the Earth through the orbital system’s center of massthe action will not change the angular momentum. This can be described as a measure of rotational motion which is intrinsically dependent on the mass, velocity and position of both objects.

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The angular momentum of the Moon is constant, so the closer it gets to the Earth, the more it will have to accelerate its orbital motion. However, when a force is applied toward the Earth, the only thing that is achieved is a lateral movement that will eventually cause the planet to change its orbit with respect to the Sun, albeit not to a significant extent.

In other words, If the Moon is pushed towards the Earth, then no collision will occur between them. Instead, there would be an orbital change of the Moon around the Earth, and thus an orbital change of the Earth around the Sun. Therefore, this would not be the way to cause the catastrophic collision, but there is still another way.

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A force against the motion of the moon’s orbit

If an amount equal to that is used in the previous example, about 50 times the Earth’s gravitational field but this time in Opposite direction of lunar orbital motionThings are getting a little worrisome. Doing so now will affect the angular momentum of the moon, which means that The overall turnover rate will become much slowerenough for the moon to rush like a boulder in free fall towards our planet.

Therefore, the only way the Moon could collide with the Earth would be simply by completely freezing the satellite’s natural orbit. which is the same Slow down the moon to full zero, relative to the ground. In this case, yes, we should worry, because The orbital system will be broken and the Earth’s gravitational field will attract the satellite Its acceleration increases with time, just as gravity acts on a rock in free fall.

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The answer to whether both objects can collide, the answer is yes, although big but. For this to happen, there must be a mysterious and great force working to slow the moon’s rotation to zero, although such conditions are unlikely to occur. In the meantime, we can continue to enjoy the amazing orbital system made up of our planet and its moon.

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