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Rocks brought by Chinese space mission reveal secrets of lunar history – 10/19/2021 – Science

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the first Moonstones were brought to earth For decades, they have shown that volcanic activity on Earth’s satellites is shorter than previously thought, Chinese scientists who analyzed them announced on Tuesday (19).

last year, A Chinese space mission brought rocks and soil from the moon to Earth, Something that has not happened in four decades and represents the great achievement of the Chinese space program.

When analyzing this material, the scientists found Basalt, a form of frozen lavaFrom 2,030 million years, the last known volcanic activity on the Moon is approaching 900 million years.

Analysis of the samples “reveals that the interior of the Moon was expanding about 2 billion years ago,” the Chinese Academy of Sciences said in a statement.

However, these samples came from older parts of the lunar surface, and the scientific community is unaware of an important part of the satellite’s most recent history.

The Chang’e5 mission, named after the Chinese moon goddess, collected two kilograms of samples from Mons Rumker volcano, a part of the moon that had not been previously explored.

Scientists have chosen this area because of the low density of meteorites on the surface, which they think may have formed recently.

“These results are extremely exciting because they provide incredible insight into understanding the formation of the Moon and its evolution over time,” said Audrey Bouvier, a professor of astronomy at the University of Beirut, in a video message presented in a newspaper conference. Press in Beijing this Tuesday.

The latest findings, published in three articles in the journal Nature on Tuesday, raise new questions for scientists trying to understand the satellite’s history.

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“How did the moon sustain volcanic activity for so long? The moon is small and the heat must dissipate quickly, at least that’s what we think,” Li Xianhua, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, told reporters.

Chang’e 5 mission samples was a big step Chinese space program, Sent one robot to Mars and the other to the hidden part of the moon.

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