Frightening disasters and a frightening scenario … if the moon approaches the earth

The moon is the closest celestial body to Earth, and it plays a major role in making life possible on it, due to its gravity that stabilizes the earth’s oscillation around its axis, and this is what leads to the stability of the climate. The moon revolves around the earth in an elliptical path, so that the apogee is 405,696 km, which is the farthest point of the moon from the earth. When the moon approaches the earth, it is at a distance of 363.104 km, and this point is called perihelion. This means that the average distance between the Earth and the Moon is equal to 384,400 km.

An attractive force is formed between the moon and the earth according to Newton’s law of general gravitation, which indicates that the force of attraction between any two objects in the universe is proportional to the product of their masses, and inversely to the square of the distance between them. We notice the force of the moon’s gravitational pull to the earth, clearly in the tidal phenomena in the seas and oceans. What would happen if the distance between the moon and the earth decreased?

There are many strange events will happen, and here we put the closest scenarios that are based on science. The Moon’s gravitational pull to the Earth will increase as the distance between them decreases, as stipulated by Newton’s law of general attraction. If the moon gets too close, the tidal phenomena will swell tremendously, leading to major global floods. This means the disappearance of many cities under water. Also, the earth itself will be affected by this strong gravity, through its effect on the outer shell of the earth or the mantle, so that it rises and falls. As a result of this movement, tectonic activity will increase and very terrible earthquakes and volcanoes will occur.

The moon’s approach to the earth will increase the speed of the earth’s rotation around its axis, according to the law of conservation of angular momentum. At that point, hurricanes will be generated as a result of the faster atmosphere rotating. Also, the day on planet Earth will be short.

For the viewer, the size of the moon will appear larger as it approaches the earth, which will contribute to blocking the sun’s rays. In doing so, solar eclipses will become commonplace.

If the moon gets closer and reaches what is known as the “Rosh Limit” (the distance in which an astronomical body is held together by its gravity when approaching another body), the moon will be disintegrated and shattered by the tidal force caused by the gravity of the planet. These disjointed parts will form rings on Earth, like those of Saturn. However, it will not be long before these parts fall onto the planet like thousands of asteroids.

Indeed, something similar to this catastrophic scenario occurred in our solar system. In 1992, comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 (9) approached Jupiter and exceeded the Roch limit of Jupiter, and it broke into more than twenty pieces, which started to orbit around it, then fell one after the other on Jupiter in 1994 AD. Its destructive power was estimated at three hundred million atomic bombs!

Thus, it becomes clear that the results of the possible scenario in the event of the moon approaching the earth will be catastrophic to the maximum extent. This tragic, imaginary ending has inspired some acts of dystopia and the end of the world. But in fact, the moon is about 3.8 cm away from Earth per year. Therefore, it is unlikely that the hypothetical series of events such as earthquakes, volcanoes and hurricanes will occur, and we will not see permanent eclipses, and rings similar to Saturn’s rings will not appear, and the moon will remain a safety and stability factor for planet Earth.



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