Around 1.4 Billion Years Ago One Day Only Consisted Of 18 Hours

New Study Proves that Days Were Shorter in The Past.

According to a new study, Moon is constantly getting away from Earth, and its distance has a significant effect on the duration of hours that make up for a full day on the Earth. Among other different reasons, Moon’s existence and its distance from Earth make our planet an ideal place where biological life can evolve and sustain. Tides happen due to Moon’s gravitational pull, and it is also responsible for the occurrence of different seasons on planet Earth.

“As the moon moves away, the Earth is like a spinning figure skater who slows down as they stretch their arms out,” explains Stephen Meyers, professor of geoscience at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and co-author of the study published this week [June 4, 2018] in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

For their research, the scientists reconstructed the model of our solar system by studying geological history of Earth; they did so by linking their geologic findings with different astronomical scenarios. Rocks have been on Earth for a very long time; they studied rocks from different time periods and made a timeline of climate changes that took place in the past.

“One of our ambitions was to use astrochronology to tell time in the most distant past, to develop very ancient geological time scales,” Meyers says. “We want to be able to study rocks that are billions of years old in a way that is comparable to how we study modern geologic processes.”

The movement of all planets is affected by other astronomical objects that surround them, based upon their size, mass density and distance; all stars, planets, and moon exert a gravitational pull on each other.

Being the nearest astronomical body near earth, the Moon directly influences Earth’s rotations and tilt on its axis, it also affects how our planet is orbiting around the sun. It has already been discovered that Moon is constantly shifting away from earth since the very beginning, given the current rate of 3.82 cm per year, around 1.4 billion years ago Moon’s proximity to Earth could have resulted in 18-hour days on Earth.

But there are still many flaws within the system, the moon has been around for 4.4 billion years, around 1.5 billion years ago, at a rate of 3.82 cm per year; the Moon would have gotten dangerously close to Earth, and our planet’s gravitational pull may have ripped it apart.

To rule out and compensate for such irregularities the scientists developed a new statistical model, called TimeOpt, this model allowed them to correctly map their geological data with currently available astronomical theories.

“The geologic record is an astronomical observatory for the early solar system,” says Meyers. “We are looking at its pulsing rhythm, preserved in the rock and the history of life.”


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