The Moon is very old, and many believe it to be almost as old as the Earth. There is still much to be learned about the Moon. A study now states that the Moon age is much older than expected.
A new analysis to an earlier discovery is shedding new light on the Moon's age. The Apollo 14 mission back in 1971 brought back rock and soil samples from the Moon. The samples were said to be as small as grains of sand, but were enough to be used to analysis.
Melanie Barboni, lead author of the study from the University of California Los Angeles has said that the size of the samples doesn't matter. Some of the samples had already been used for analysis, which was also done in UCLA. Barboni has said that she will continue to study the samples taken from the Apollo 14 mission.
The samples that were studied indicate that the Moon is 4.51 billion years old. That would mean that the Moon has been formed around 60 million years after the solar system was first formed. That would also mean the new estimate is much earlier than the previous estimates saying that the Moon was formed 100 million years after the formation of the solar system.
Back in 1971 Alan Shepard and Edgar Mitchell were able to take 92 pounds of samples from the Moon, according to ABC News. The samples consisted of rocks and soil taken from the Fra Mauro highlands of the Moon. Since then the samples have been examined for possible clues about the Moon's composition as well as age.
Barboni and her colleagues would still continue to study the samples to find out more on how the Moon was formed, as The Washington Post reports. This could also possibly unlock the secret of the Earth's formation as well as that of the solar system. Already there is much talk about the Moon as an earlier report has said that the Moon has been formed after a collision by earlier moons. While much of that would have to be verified, the new findings show that the Moon age is much older than expected.