The Moon

The Moon is the second brightest object in the sky after the Sun, but it is not a star. The Moon is about ¼ the diameter of the Earth and is made of rocky material. Most lunar rocks are between 3 and 4.6 billion years old. Many scientists believe that the Moon formed when the Earth ran into a very large object (perhaps as big as the planet Mars.) They think the Moon formed from the broken material. The Moon is the only natural satellite of the Earth and travels around the Earth in an orbit. The Moon orbits the Earth because it is so much lighter than our planet

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The diameter of four Moons is equal to the diameter of the Earth.

Entry 4: In your Agronaut log, draw a picture of the Earth and its orbital path around the Sun. Now add to the picture the Moon and its orbital path around the Earth.

The Moon is about 240,000 miles (386,000 kilometers) away from Earth. The temperature on the Moon is much colder, but strangely also much hotter than on Earth. It can get as hot as 212 °F (100 °C) and as cold as -233 °F (-147 °C)! This large temperature range happens because the Moon has no atmosphere. On Earth, our atmosphere helps to control the temperature on our planet. Since the Moon has no atmosphere to help with temperature control, it is very hot where the Sun shines on the Moon and it is very cold where the Sun does not shine on the Moon! Because of the way the Moon rotates, the lunar South Pole never gets any sunlight.

Man-made satellites that have traveled around the Moon have found some evidence of ice scattered in some of the deep craters near the Moon's North and South Poles. This means that there is a form of water on the Moon.

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