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Old 12th November 2019, 01:29 PM   #801
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As I am sure most here know, the Moon's spin matches its orbital rotation. This being why we always see the same side of the Moon from Earth - with a slight variation due to the elliptical orbit of the Moon.

How many know why this is so?
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Old 12th November 2019, 05:20 PM   #802
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Old 12th November 2019, 05:22 PM   #803
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
As I am sure most here know, the Moon's spin matches its orbital rotation. This being why we always see the same side of the Moon from Earth - with a slight variation due to the elliptical orbit of the Moon.

How many know why this is so?
I do. I'm not sure I could explain it technically, but there are several bodies in the solar system that are tidally locked with their parent.
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Old 12th November 2019, 06:57 PM   #804
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
I do. I'm not sure I could explain it technically, but there are several bodies in the solar system that are tidally locked with their parent.
I managed to give a good enough explanation of the mechanism of tidal locking to my girlfriend on the fly that she was able to understand how it works, but I suspect if I tried to do it here there'd be more errors than I'm happy to expose.

Out of curiosity, which bodies are tidally locked? The Moon, obivously, but that's the only one I know. Are Phobos and Demos tidally locked? Mercury is partially locked, or something, but that's something I don't fully understand, I think it goes through 2 days / 3 orbits? Something like that...

I'm guessing the other tidally locked bodies are moons, I just don't know which ones they would be offhand...
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Old 12th November 2019, 08:09 PM   #805
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I managed to give a good enough explanation of the mechanism of tidal locking to my girlfriend on the fly that she was able to understand how it works, but I suspect if I tried to do it here there'd be more errors than I'm happy to expose.

Out of curiosity, which bodies are tidally locked? The Moon, obivously, but that's the only one I know. Are Phobos and Demos tidally locked? Mercury is partially locked, or something, but that's something I don't fully understand, I think it goes through 2 days / 3 orbits? Something like that...

I'm guessing the other tidally locked bodies are moons, I just don't know which ones they would be offhand...
I had to look it up, but according to Wikipedia, most major moons are tidally locked to their primaries. I thought it was only a few. Pluto and Charon are tidally locked to each other.
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Old 12th November 2019, 08:19 PM   #806
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Spiders are not crabs, and crabs are not spiders, but there are both spider crabs and crab spiders.
A red giant panda is different than a giant red panda.
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Old 12th November 2019, 08:22 PM   #807
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Once upon a time (in some of my older Astronomy books), Mercury was thought to be tidally locked with the Sun. Now it is known not to be. The resonance between its rotation and revolution is interesting.
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Old 12th November 2019, 08:27 PM   #808
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Originally Posted by Gord_in_Toronto View Post
Once upon a time (in some of my older Astronomy books), Mercury was thought to be tidally locked with the Sun. Now it is known not to be.
Source please?


ETA: This might be partially a semantic issue? Seems to be some disagreement over whether tidally influenced resonances aren't examples of tidal locking, or whether tidal locking strictly means rotation=revolution.
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Old 12th November 2019, 08:36 PM   #809
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
Source please?
Wikipedia, same link as above.

Quote:
It was thought for some time that Mercury was in synchronous rotation with the Sun. This was because whenever Mercury was best placed for observation, the same side faced inward. Radar observations in 1965 demonstrated instead that Mercury has a 3:2 spin–orbit resonance, rotating three times for every two revolutions around the Sun, which results in the same positioning at those observation points. Modeling has demonstrated that Mercury was captured into the 3:2 spin–orbit state very early in its history, within 20 (and more likely even 10) million years after its formation.[16]
Footnote 16 leads to:

Quote:
Noyelles, Benoit; Frouard, Julien; Makarov, Valeri V. & Efroimsky, Michael (2014). "Spin–orbit evolution of Mercury revisited". Icarus. 241: 26–44. arXiv:1307.0136. Bibcode:2014Icar..241...26N. doi10.1016/j.icarus.2014.05.045.
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Old 12th November 2019, 08:55 PM   #810
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Yes, but note that what you quote doesn't mention tidal locking.
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Old 12th November 2019, 10:33 PM   #811
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
Yes, but note that what you quote doesn't mention tidal locking.
It mentions synchronous rotation, which is basically the same thing. Pluto and Charon are in synchronous rotation, which means that they're tidally locked to each other.
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Old Yesterday, 06:59 AM   #812
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
It mentions synchronous rotation, which is basically the same thing. Pluto and Charon are in synchronous rotation, which means that they're tidally locked to each other.
But that's not at issue. Here is what I was commenting on:

Originally Posted by Gord_in_Toronto View Post
Once upon a time (in some of my older Astronomy books), Mercury was thought to be tidally locked with the Sun. Now it is known not to be. The resonance between its rotation and revolution is interesting.
That's not correct based on the wikipedia article. The accurate way to say what I think Gord is referring to is: Mercury was once thought to be in synchronous rotation with the Sun via tidal locking, now it is known not to be in synchronous rotation but, rather, tidal locking has caused it to be in a resonance.

IOW Resonances are due to tidal locking and synchronous orbit is a special case of resonance.
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Old Yesterday, 07:14 AM   #813
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
As I am sure most here know, the Moon's spin matches its orbital rotation. This being why we always see the same side of the Moon from Earth - with a slight variation due to the elliptical orbit of the Moon.
This leads to one of my favorite facts. Because of this, if you are on the moon, the earth does not rise and set like the moon does from the earth. In fact, the earth pretty much stays in the same place in the sky.

In order to see the "earth rise" you have to be orbiting the moon. That's the picture Bill Anders took from Apollo 8
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Old Yesterday, 07:19 AM   #814
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One of my favorite facts is that the so called dark side of the Moon gets a bit more light than the other side. I name this fact Roger.
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Old Yesterday, 08:56 AM   #815
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A different view

The following URL links to "The Atheist Experience" for November 10, 2019.

https://youtu.be/xzjcUXJcjps?t=4664

From this point to the end of the show is about 34 minutes of some incredible examples of non-science.
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Old Yesterday, 10:26 AM   #816
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
Source please?


ETA: This might be partially a semantic issue? Seems to be some disagreement over whether tidally influenced resonances aren't examples of tidal locking, or whether tidal locking strictly means rotation=revolution.
No can (easily) do as all my astronomy books are in storage but this article does discuss the subject:

https://scienceblogs.com/startswitha...ery-of-mercury
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Old Yesterday, 10:28 AM   #817
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
But that's not at issue. Here is what I was commenting on:


That's not correct based on the wikipedia article. The accurate way to say what I think Gord is referring to is: Mercury was once thought to be in synchronous rotation with the Sun via tidal locking, now it is known not to be in synchronous rotation but, rather, tidal locking has caused it to be in a resonance.

IOW Resonances are due to tidal locking and synchronous orbit is a special case of resonance.
Umm. Yes. That's exactly what I meant.
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Old Yesterday, 11:34 AM   #818
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
One of my favorite facts is that the so called dark side of the Moon gets a bit more light than the other side. I name this fact Roger.
I'm not sure if you're being facetious here. One can never tell on these boards.
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Old Yesterday, 11:36 AM   #819
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Originally Posted by alfaniner View Post
I'm not sure if you're being facetious here. One can never tell on these boards.
The fact is true. In fact, it's true with either the correct definition of "dark side" (where it's trivially true) or the erroneous confusion with "far side" (where it's true to distance to Sun and effect of eclipses).
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Old Yesterday, 02:49 PM   #820
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
The fact is true. In fact, it's true with either the correct definition of "dark side" (where it's trivially true) or the erroneous confusion with "far side" (where it's true to distance to Sun and effect of eclipses).
I think, using the correct definition, the light side of the moon gets more light than the dark side does.
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Old Yesterday, 02:57 PM   #821
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Originally Posted by sphenisc View Post
I think, using the correct definition, the light side of the moon gets more light than the dark side does.
Oh, duh, I should have re-read my original claim. You are of course correct. What I said only applies to the "so called dark side" as I originally stated.
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Old Yesterday, 03:04 PM   #822
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
As I am sure most here know, the Moon's spin matches its orbital rotation. This being why we always see the same side of the Moon from Earth - with a slight variation due to the elliptical orbit of the Moon.

How many know why this is so?
There are some other cool facts.

Such as the 24-hour Earth affects the 28-day Moon via tides ... 24 is increasing (what is 28 doing?). So the cosmic coincidence that the Moon is ~the same size (on the sky) as the Sun is rather narrow (in geological time). Once the Moon was much closer (and tides were much bigger). And astronomical models of the Earth-Moon system match geological evidence going back almost to the earliest sedementary deposits. How can geologists estimate the number of days in a year, in a ~billion year old rock formation?
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Old Yesterday, 04:29 PM   #823
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
I do. I'm not sure I could explain it technically, but there are several bodies in the solar system that are tidally locked with their parent.

The term "tidal locking" has been used by some posters above but I haven't seen an explanation of how this works here. I read about it some time ago but can't find the explanation in an article again. I gained a fairly good grasp I think from my previous reading so here it is in my words:

In the earlier days of the Moon's existence it was molten to a larger degree than today.

The Moon would have had a faster speed of rotation than the current 28 days in the same direction as today (I think most orbiting bodies rotate in the same direction as the orbit) and as it rotated and being molten distorted due to Earths gravitational pull. We can refer to this molten flow as tidal.

Distortion requires energy and that energy was taped from the rotational kinetic energy, causing the Moon's spin to slow down. Toward the end I imagine it would have maybe rocked back and forth, until its spin was in sync with the orbit.
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Old Yesterday, 05:13 PM   #824
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I remember a long ongoing argument, maybe it was on this board, about whether the moon revolves with respect to the earth. One group argued that it did rotate, once per orbit, and the other group argued that with respect to the earth it didn't rotate - because if it did, we'd be able to see the other side.

Both groups understood exactly what was happening, but they couldn't agree about how to correctly describe it, in English.
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Old Yesterday, 05:21 PM   #825
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I remember someone used the analogy of a squirrel hiding, clinging on the opposite side of a tree trunk compared to where you're standing. As you walk around the tree, the squirrel moves too, so as to remain hidden, but it always faces towards you.

After you've walked one complete circuit of the tree, the question then is, have you walked around the squirrel?
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Old Yesterday, 05:48 PM   #826
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It isn't quite completely locked. Its average orientation is locked, but it drifts minutely above and below, or ahead of and behind, that average. So the amount of its surface that can be seen from different parts Earth at different times is actually not half but almost three fifths.

One part of the reason for that is actually a cheat, meaning by itself it doesn't mean the moon isn't tidally locked; it's just a matter of perception from Earth's surface making it look not quite so if one's observations are precise enough. It would still apply even if the "lock" were more all-encompassing and the following two phenomena after this paragraph didn't happen. It's that the moon can be simultaneously observed by different points on Earth at the same time that are up to roughly one Earth-diameter apart from each other. That sets up a stereoscopic effect by which you could see small differences if you compared simultaneously-shot images of it from far-flung points on Earth. It also means that you could observe a small amount of apparent rotation of the moon form a fixed point on Earth over the course of a single day/night as you moved from a moonrise point of view to a moonset point of view. Even if the following two things weren't real, this would still be the case.

But also, there are two ways in which the moon is not perfectly locked.

First, its axis of rotation is tilted, not perpendicular to the plane of its orbit. The geometric effect is exactly the same as with the angle of Earth's axis to Earth's plane or orbit, which causes the sun to "see" more of Earth's northern hemisphere during the northern summer and more of the southern hemisphere during the southern summer. We see more of the moon's northern hemisphere during one half of its orbit and more of its southern hemisphere during the other half.

And second, while its speed of rotation and speed of movement along its orbital path match each other on average, the latter fluctuates more. In a non-circular orbit, the orbiting object moves slower (both in miles per time and in degrees per time as seen from the object it's orbiting) when it's farther away and faster (again both in miles per time and in degrees per time as seen from the object it's orbiting) when it's closer. Thus, the net effect of a constant rotation rate and an overall averaged-out 1:1 ratio of rotations to orbits combines to a small net forward (eastward) rotation near apogee and a small net backward (westward) rotation near perigee. Another way to look at the same thing is that if it's rotating once for each trip along an ellipse then the same face is always facing the point exactly halfway between the ellipse's two epicenters, which is not the same as always facing either epicenter, which is where the orbited object is; instead it means facing slightly back behind the nearest epicenter as it approaches one end of its orbit, and facing slightly ahead of the nearest epicenter as it moves away from that end of its orbit.

An observer holding position in space between Earth and the moon, to always look straight at the moon and keep Earth at his/her back (thus eliminating any misleading or distracting effects that are caused by Earth's rotation & atmosphere alone) would see the moon doing this each "month" (moonth?):

Image linked instead of embedded, to avoid having the host's server need to serve it whenever this page loads

Notice the word "libration" in the link. That's the word to look up for more about this elsewhere.
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Old Yesterday, 06:09 PM   #827
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
I remember a long ongoing argument, maybe it was on this board, about whether the moon revolves with respect to the earth. One group argued that it did rotate, once per orbit, and the other group argued that with respect to the earth it didn't rotate - because if it did, we'd be able to see the other side.

Both groups understood exactly what was happening, but they couldn't agree about how to correctly describe it, in English.
And that's clearly the only time that has ever happened.
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Old Yesterday, 06:12 PM   #828
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
I remember someone used the analogy of a squirrel hiding, clinging on the opposite side of a tree trunk compared to where you're standing. As you walk around the tree, the squirrel moves too, so as to remain hidden, but it always faces towards you.

After you've walked one complete circuit of the tree, the question then is, have you walked around the squirrel?
https://www.imaginativeuniversal.com...-the-squirrel/
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Old Today, 02:05 AM   #829
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What a ridiculously biased, self centered, conclusion that is. Totally and disgustingly speciest.
Obviously it's the squirrel walking around the human, or not, depending on the squirrels definition of 'around'.
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