A newly published study has caused researchers to rethink their theory of the moon and update it with new information.
The first humans landed on the moon 52 years ago, and when the astronauts were on the surface of the moon, they collected samples to be studied. From the samples, researchers found they had magnetization, leading to the theory that the moon, at some stage, had a protective magnetic field throughout its 4.53 billion-year history. Researchers believed this magnetization could be coming from the mingling of liquid iron deep in the moon's core. However, that isn't the case.
According to John Tarduno, a geophysics professor at the University of Rochester in New York, the previous experiments that have resulted in this long-standing theory about the moon may have provided inaccurate results. Tarduno and colleagues inspected the samples acquired from the Apollo missions with advanced carbon dioxide lasers and highly sensitive magnetometers. What the researchers found was that the moon never had a magnetic field.
Tarduno found that the magnetization that earlier researchers detected may have come from a meteorite or comet impact. And that the samples, when tested with more advanced instruments, failed at giving off strong magnetic signals even when it was possible.
Tarduno said in a statement, "If there had been a magnetic field on the moon, the samples we studied should all have acquired magnetization, but they haven't. That's pretty conclusive that the moon didn't have a long-lasting dynamo field."
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