How a vaporized Earth might have cooked up the moon

New simulation suggests the moon formed when Earth turned into a squishy doughnut

illustration of early Earth

COOKIN’ After colliding with a planet-sized rock, the early Earth may have existed as a hot cloud of vapor and rock (illustrated), from which the moon also may have formed. 

S. Stewart/UC Davis based on NASA rendering

This article is only available to Science News subscribers.

Subscribers, enter your e-mail address to access our archives.

Not a subscriber?

Science News is a nonprofit.

Support us by subscribing now.

More Stories from Science News on Planetary Science

From the Nature Index

Paid Content