Moon discovery: Ancient 4-billion-year-old relic found on lunar surface

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This photo by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter shows the Apollo 14 landing site and nearby Cone Crater.

A lunar rock sample collected on the Apollo 14 mission.

"Going back to the Moon to understand how it formed, and how our own planet formed would be a scientific boost, just as the US Apollo and Soviet Luna missions to the Moon were back in the late 1960's and early 1970's", said Day. And he believes that more may be found.

The "moon rock" probably collided with the moon after an impact sent it hurtling from Earth 4 billion years ago, according to research published Thursday in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters.

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You might be thinking that's an terrible long way for a rock to travel, even if was the result of a colossal strike, but at this time the moon was three times closer to Earth than it is now. The stone was along these lines blended with other lunar surface materials into one example.

An artistic rendering of the Hadean Earth when the rock fragment was formed. The evidence was found by an worldwide team of scientists associated with the Center for Lunar Science and Exploration (CLSE) which is also part of NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute.

'It is an extraordinary find that helps paint a better picture of early Earth and the bombardment that modified our planet during the dawn of life, ' said NASA scientist Dr David Kring, who led the research.

It would require the sample to have formed at tremendous depths, in the lunar mantle, where very different rock compositions are anticipated, they said. Along these lines, the least complex elucidation is that the example originated from Earth.

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A new study suggests a chunk of material brought back by astronauts from the moon contains a tiny piece of Earth, which likely blasted off our planet during a powerful impact that occurred about 4 billion years ago. But, that proved to be the Earth's oldest rock ever discovered, and it revealed more info about our planet's early history instead of showing more about the Moon composition. Once on the moon, the rock was further sculpted by new impacts which melted and altered it into a new kind of rock about 3.9 billion years ago.

"That's that these unusual characteristics are the result of impact processes on the Moon, without the need for having these rocks arriving from Earth", he told Gizmodo. It was possible to determine how deep beneath the earth the rock had been with the use of molecular analysis. At the time, Earth would have been experiencing asteroid impacts capable of creating craters that were hundreds of miles wide.

Almost 48 years after Apollo 14 returned from the moon with a cargo of collected rocks, geologists have established that at least one of them originated 20 km below the Earth's surface.

The Moon was much closer to the Earth than it is today when the rock fragment was produced and ejected from the Earth.

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According to a statement on the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) website, the ancient relic comprises 0.08 ounces of quartz, feldspar and zircon.