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Thread: When a satellite crashed into the moon, it rang like a bell for hours?

  1. #1
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    Question When a satellite crashed into the moon, it rang like a bell for hours?

    This was mentioned along with the Apollo missions.

    Is there any truth to this statement?

  2. #2
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    In space, no one can hear you ring, but if you have seismic sensors on the Moon (like the ones Apollo put there), you can detect the vibrations, and in fact they were detectable for hours.
    Forming opinions as we speak

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutoBoof View Post
    When a satellite crashed into the moon, it rang like a bell for hours?

    This was mentioned along with the Apollo missions.

    Is there any truth to this statement?
    If by "rang like a bell" you mean it went dong like a bell, no.

    If by "rang like a bell" you mean it continued to vibrate for hours, yes.

    If I understand the statement correctly, the implication of the statement was that it meant the Moon was solid, and no part of its inside is liquid. This is unlike the Earth which has layers which are liquid.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter B View Post
    If I understand the statement correctly, the implication of the statement was that it meant the Moon was solid, and no part of its inside is liquid. This is unlike the Earth which has layers which are liquid.
    and yet NASA says ....

    The team's findings suggest the moon possesses a solid, iron-rich inner core with a radius of nearly 150 miles and a fluid, primarily liquid-iron outer core with a radius of roughly 205 miles

  5. #5
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    I said:
    If I understand the statement correctly, the implication of the statement was that it meant the Moon was solid, and no part of its inside is liquid. This is unlike the Earth which has layers which are liquid.
    Max8166 replied:
    and yet NASA says ....

    The team's findings suggest the moon possesses a solid, iron-rich inner core with a radius of nearly 150 miles and a fluid, primarily liquid-iron outer core with a radius of roughly 205 miles
    Then I understood wrong. Thank you for the correction.

  6. #6
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    The 'rang like a bell' claim was a misrepresentation of something that was said at a press cnoference discussing the results of the deployment of a seismometer on the Apollo 12 (I believe) mission. What was actually said was more along the lines of:

    The vibrations from an impact went on much longer than expected, and the scientists were as surprised by this as someone would be had they struck a bell and still found it ringing an hour later.

    In other words, an analogy was used to try and get across how significant this event was, and someone, somehwere, misunderstood it entirely and it got corrupted to the Moon itself ringing like a bell.

  7. #7
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    Question

    So it seem we still don't know what the moon is made of...or if it has a liquid, solid or hollow core. Will the Grail Mission be able to zero in on the density and structure of the moon? How long will it be before it starts producing science?

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    The idea behind the experiment was that the mission astronauts would place seismic sensors on the Moon, and then a spent S-IVB stage (which they used to get to the Moon in the first place) would be crashed into the Moon (at a different location of course). I also think some missions would crash their LMs after transfering back to the CSM on the way back. The sensors would pick up the seismic waves from the impact, and we would learn about the composition of the Moon.

    The Moon rang like a bell for hours is intended to be a colorful description of what these sensors have picked up.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutoBoof View Post
    So it seem we still don't know what the moon is made of...or if it has a liquid, solid or hollow core. Will the Grail Mission be able to zero in on the density and structure of the moon? How long will it be before it starts producing science?
    We have a pretty good idea. Take a look at the summary on Wikipedia for a high level view. As always, head to the citation links to find papers and more in-depth discussion of how we know all that. Of course, GRAIL will indeed provide us a lot more detail, and may change some of the things we think we know. We'll start to see early result in 4 or 5 months, about a month in to the data collection phase, and analysis will continue for a year after all data collection is finished.
    Conserve energy. Commute with the Hamiltonian.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutoBoof View Post
    So it seem we still don't know what the moon is made of...or if it has a liquid, solid or hollow core.
    How did you arrive at that conclusion? It seems contrary to what others have posted.

  11. #11
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    There were several different answers posted as to whether the has a solid or liquid core. Wouldn't the liquid core absorb the sound and not 'ring for hours'?

    It seems to me that we still don't know for sure.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutoBoof View Post
    There were several different answers posted as to whether the has a solid or liquid core. Wouldn't the liquid core absorb the sound and not 'ring for hours'?

    It seems to me that we still don't know for sure.
    Check out the wiki page that Grey linked to; you'll see there is plenty of evidence for liquid and semi-liquid zones surrounding a solid core. It still seems you are reading too much into the "ringing" analogy by mentioning "sound" in this context.

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