Space agencies on earth are in a race to explore the surface of the Moon from various perspective. Being a natural satellite of our planet and one of the nearest heavy astronomical body of our solar system you would be curious to know more about Moon, how far it is away from our planet and how big is the moon compared to earth etc.
Moon Distance from Earth and Time to Reach There
Moon is around 238,855 miles or 384,400 km away from the earth. And if you travel by spacecraft you can reach at Moon in 3 days. Actually, in zero gravity spacecraft can travel from normal speed of 40,000 km per hour to high speed of 266,000 km/hr depending on the spacecraft capability and path choose to reach at a specific location.
How Much Bigger Is The Earth Than The Moon?
While comparing the earth with Moon, you can account multiple parameters like diameter, volume, mass and surface area depending on your needs. So, we have compared the moon with earth accounting various parameters listed below.
Moon Size Compared To Earth
Diameter – Moon 3,474 km vs Earth 12,742 km (approx 3.67 times).
Surface Area – Moon 37.9 million square km vs Earth 510 million square km.
Volume – Moon 21.9 billion cubic km vs Earth more than 1 trillion cubic km.
Mass – Moon 7.347 x 1022kg vs Earth 5.97x 1024 kg (81 times).
Moon Orbit and Rotation Period Around Earth
I think it’s clear now that who is a bigger moon or earth. Moon is a natural satellite of earth and orbiting our planet nonstop. Moon takes around 27.322 days to orbit earth and rotate on its axis in 27 days. However, it takes around 29.5 days for the Sun to move all the way across the sky and return to its original position again.
Compare to other planets in our solar system, Moon is closest to earth, hence planetary astronomers and space agencies are in a quest to reach there and explore the surface of this astronomical body to find some unknown facts like ice or other minerals existence.
Just like US, Russia and China, India space agency ISRO has also launched its second lunar exploration mission in July 2019 to reach and explore the south pole surface of Moon. But unfortunately just before the landing on Moon (2.1 km above the surface), the lander Vikram lost the connection with ISRO and not able to communicate again. ISRO is trying to contact Vikram and will also launch its next moon mission in 2022.
What Happened To Vikram Lander And Why Moon’s South Pole Is Important?
Chandrayaan 2 was one of the important space mission for India, standing it to 4th position after US, Russia and China and the first nation to explore the south pole of Moon. But unfortunately, the Rs 978 crore mission is incomplete as lander Vikram lost its communication with rover just before 2.1 km landings on the surface of Moon.
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief, Dr. K Sivan confirmed that “lander Vikram lost the contact” just before the landing, which was the second component of the entire project that has three objects – Orbiter, Lander (Vikram) and Rover (Pragyan).
However, the 2,379-kg Orbiter is still in the space and successfully orbiting the Moon with a mission life of one year. The Orbiter payloads will conduct remote-sensing observations from a 100 km orbit and sending the picture of the various surface of the moon.
What Happened To Vikram Lander?
Lander Vikram – Named after the famous after Dr. Vikram A Sarabhai, the Father of the Indian Space Programme is designed to function for one lunar day, which is equivalent to about 14 Earth days was capable to communicate with Indian scientist and was also designed to execute a soft landing on the lunar surface.
On 7 September 2019 at 1:37 AM, rough braking of Vikram lander started and at 1:49 AM rough breaking of Vikram lander ended and fine braking phase started. Meanwhile, it was a cheerful moment for the all ISRO scientists, they all started clapping saying Vikram lander completed the rough braking phase before the fine braking phase started for a soft landing.
But at the next moment, just before at the altitude of 2.1 km from the surface of Moon, communications from Vikram to ground station was lost. Actually, the lander deviated from its intended trajectory and the last location of the spacecraft showed it to be 1km from its landing site traveling vertically at 60m/s and horizontally at 48m/s.
Vikram Lander Spotted by Rover on Moon
As per the latest updates by ISRO, rover has found the lander in a single piece on Moon surface, even after the hard landing but standing at tilted position. Rover has also captured thermal images and sent to ISRO but unable to establish the connection with lander, as there are some obstacles stooping the space agency to establish the connection.
However, ISRO says, they can manage to raise “one-way” communication with Vikram, but it would not last more than 5-10 minutes. As there is always a two-way communication between the orbiter and lander, but they can attempt to communicate through one way which is a tricky situation and scientists are trying to handle that.
Why Vikram Lander Lost Contact?
Since the data was being analyzed by the ISRO scientist to know what exactly happened and why Vikram lost communication with ISRO. It will also research is there any further possibility to again establish communication with Vikram.
However, Vikram will be still in contact with orbiter which will help it to spot the exact location where lander has landed and how far from the predefined location which was at the south pole of the moon – A never before explored surface on this satellite of the earth.
Why Moon South Pole is Important for Vikam’s Landing?
It was 110th moon mission and many countries have explored the different part of lunar terrain but not find anything significant physical phenomenon like a sign of water or other essential minerals. Hence, Chandrayaan 2 mission was very important, as it was planned to land on the south pole of Moon which has not been unexplored till now.
Indian scientists have used their own technology to launch this mission without taking help from any foreign scientist or any other country’s space research center like NASA.
As per scientist’s estimates, this region of Moon likely to have major elements such as Magnesium, Aluminium, Silicon, Calcium, Titanium, Iron, and Sodium. And Chandrayaan 2’s rover was designed to examine the presence of such minerals and also conduct a quantitative estimation of water-ice in the polar regions of the Moon.
Being a natural satellite of earth, Moon is located at distance of 3,84,400 Km from here and Chandrayaan 2 moon mission was almost complete, as only 2 Km distance was left to reach there. However, unexpected technical glitches are close friend of such unmanned missions.
But such failures also teach scientists a lesson to study the loopholes and avoid such issues again in the next mission. Hopefully, Indian scientists will launch next lunar mission soon with better chances of success avoiding such failures or crashes while landing on Moon.
What Would Happen If The Moon Crashed Into Earth: Video
You will be amazed to know what would happen if the moon hit the earth. You can watch the video below to see what if the moon fell to earth.
Video What Would Happen if the Moon Crashed into the Earth:
Sleep for 60 Days in Bed and NASA Will Pay You $18,500 for this Job
If you are a lazy person and love to sleep most of the time and can lay in bed for 60 days, NASA is giving you a golden chance to earn $18,500 or approximately Rs. 12,80,000 in Indian currency just for sleeping on the bed for two months allowing scientists to study and understand how artificial gravity affects the body of humans.
What is NASA 60 Days in Bed Study and Motive of this Research?
As per this research and study volunteers have to sleep for 60 days upon the bed while performing all daily necessary the activities like havingmeals, taking a bath at the bed-rest phases under the guidance of scientist andother attendants at research center.
And during the AGBRESA study, you will not be allowed to move so that strain on their muscles, tendons, and the skeletal system are cut down. Actually, the main motive behind this study is how bodies change in a weightless environment, similar to living in space.
NASA will take out data to see how astronauts are affected in space when they stay in space for long days and by simulating weightlessness’ effects with bed rest, scientists will develop methods to counteract the impacts of weightlessness on astronauts, so that they don’t need to spend most of their days on the space station exercising.
Where this Study will be conducted?
The study is called Artificial Gravity Bed Rest (AGBRESA) launched by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in association with European Space Agency (ESA) at the German Aerospace Centre, at Cologne, Germany.
To conduct this study the beds will be put in Envihab which is a medical research facility of the Institute of Aerospace Medicine of the German Aerospace Center where the effects of diverse environmental conditions on human body are analyzed and studied.
Who can apply for thisJob?
For this study NASA is looking for highly motivated, healthy 12 female and 12 male volunteers within the age of 24 to 55 years, who can lie down in bed straight for two months.
And the only qualification you require to volunteer to apply for this job to NASA is you should have knowledge of spoken German language to communicate with scientists.
How this Study Can Affect your Body?
It might be dream job for you to earn this much of money only in twomonths but it would be also stressed and little painful job. As, you won’t beallowed to sit up at all, even for meals, and must keep at least one shoulderin contact with the mattress at all times.
Though, NASA paying to sleep for 60 days but the worst could be, the top of your bed will be angled down by six degrees, so fluids move towards your head. This long days bed rest have a similar effect on your body to low gravity leading to muscle and bone atrophy.
Further, to find whether artificial gravity can effectively prevent this you’ll be taken for a daily spin in a centrifuge, pushing the blood through your extremities.
And to recover your body from such extreme tests apart from 60 days you will be stay in Envihab at for 5 days to familiarise and more 14 days for resting and astronaut rehabilitation.
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