It takes time to orbit the moon

It takes time to orbit the moon

The Moon is relatively smaller than Earth and has six times less gravity. One can think of it with these two characteristics An imaginary return to the walking satellite It’s not complicated. More or less, let’s see how long such an achievement will take us.


Here on Earth, it would take about 330 days, assuming that the circumference of the planet is about 40,000 km and that a human being walks at an average speed of 5 km. Of course, without stopping, regardless of the fact that there are oceans in between. There are even more complications on the moon To consider. Recently We saw what it would be like to talk in space, A hypothetical exercise on how to walk on the moon now.

Factors to consider

In an imaginary exercise to know how long it will take to orbit the moon, a range of factors must be taken into account. As Collected in Live Science, Speed, gravity or lunar relief are some of the factors that determine total time. Let’s look at these factors:

  • Speed: Probably the most important factor of all is the speed at which the astronaut can walk on the moon. So far, 12 NASA astronauts have traveled to the moon at an average speed of 2.2 kilometers per hour. This is a very slow speed, however, due to partial adapted space suits (probably the best) Of SpaceX). If the suits are in good condition and the lunar gravity is six times less than that of the Earth, an astronaut is expected to travel at a speed of 5 kilometers per hour.
  • Skip: On the moon, there are no oceans to orbit, but there are giant craters, which are sometimes best avoided. Therefore, all the craters that need to be circled during the last walk will be strongly increased.
  • Weather conditions: At the Moon’s equator, temperatures can reach 100 degrees Celsius during the day and as low as -180 degrees Celsius at night. To withstand such temperatures, we assume that the astronaut will be well protected with his space suit. However, even if it is fixed, it should be taken into account that low temperatures also affect the lunar surface, which is sometimes more difficult to walk on.
  • Radiation: Assuming that temperature fluctuations are not a problem, another thing that the astronaut must protect himself from is radiation. On the moon, there is no atmosphere to protect from radiation, and if there is a storm or solar flare during your walk, you will have to interrupt your walk and face the radiation to gain safety.
Aldrin20190724
  • Physical condition and distribution: If our astronaut is not protected from heat and radiation and cares about comfort … there is one last factor to consider: how long it will take to get tired. Walking is tiring, and on top of that it is equipped with oxygen cylinders and a space suit weighing several kilograms in a place like the moon. On the other hand, there is the problem of trekking equipment and you will have to take a small rover to deliver food, water and more oxygen.

Taking all these factors into account, we can do a quick math exercise to figure out how long it will take our astronaut to orbit the moon. At a speed of 5 km / h, the Moon’s circumference is 10,921 km / h, and it will take 91 days to complete its return to the Moon. Now, due to environmental conditions, we assume that he will only walk four hours a day and face a strange crater, in which case it will go up to 91 days Approximately 540 days.

READ  SpaceX crew dragon astronauts describe exciting journey into orbit

Way | Live Science

Written By
More from Jake Pearson

NASA’s Mars Insight research gets energy

Over the past 1.2 million years, marine life has become extinct in...
Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *