Bits from the explosive collision between the planet Theia and an infant Earth are widely believed to be the moon’s origin.
A Mars-sized planet impacted Earth in its infancy, and it may have left two vast portions of itself buried deep inside Earth’s core, scientists theorized in a new study.
A team of researchers led by the Arizona State University geodynamics researcher Qian Yuan, the vanished planet, named Theia, not only embedded some of itself inside our planet, but it also gave birth to the moon.
The team published a paper detailing the theory earlier this month during the 52nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 2021.
According to geodynamic models and isotopic data, the scientists theorized that two unknown dense zones 1,000 miles underneath the surface of our planet are actually “left-over Theia mantle materials.”
The dense zones are thousands of miles across, and hundreds of miles high are found beneath West Africa and the Pacific Ocean.
Yuan Began his search after analyzing the “giant impact hypothesis” regarding Earth’s moon’s data.
The theory, backed up by the composition of lunar rocks, argues that our moon formed from coalescing debris resulted from the massive crash of Theia into our planet approximately four and a half billion years ago.
A 2016 NASA-funded study suggested that our planet may be a mix of itself and Theia. They supposedly fused together at impact.
The study’s lead author, Edward Young, a professor from the University of California, Los Angeles, stated at the time:
“Theia was thoroughly mixed into both the Earth and the moon and evenly dispersed between them,”