Crashing comets caused mystery swirls on Moon

By: | Published: June 3, 2015 2:06 AM

Researchers have discovered that crashing comets caused mystery swirls on Moon over the last 100 million years.

Researchers have discovered that crashing comets caused mystery swirls on Moon over the last 100 million years.

Brown University researchers used state-of-the-art computer models to simulate the dynamics of comet impacts on the lunar soil. The simulations suggested that such impacts could account for many of the features in the mysterious swirls.

The comet impact hypothesis could also explain the presence of magnetic anomalies near the swirls. The simulations showed that a comet impact would melt some of the tiny particles near the surface. When small, iron-rich particles are melted and then cooled, they record the presence of any magnetic field that might be present at the time.

The study is published in the journal Icarus.

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