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I'm interested in the solar system. I want to know about the things you are learning. I want to know about the special interests you have to share with me and what you are specifically learning about.
Question Date: 2000-02-18
Answer 1:

This is a bit like asking Michael Jordan to teach you everything he knows about basketball in a single letter!!!

I am working on many different projects. These include: (1) the volcanology of Mt. Etna in Sicily (Italy), (2) the flow properties of magma determined in my lab at UCSB where we melt rocks, (3) study of a group of meteorites that were blasted off the surface of Mars 16 million years ago during an impact and got sent to Earth.

I like to work on different problems because it keeps things interesting. If you have more specific questions I would be glad to answer.


Answer 2:

Since I am a chemical engineer, I am not currently studying the solar system right now.We have sent your question out to some others and hopefully some of the space scientists will respond. For the time being, let me tell you about an interesting problem about the solar system that is still being examined. The problem involves the formation of the moon. Most people now think that the moon was formed when another planet struck the earth many billions of years ago. This explanation makes a lot of sense, but it does not easily explain the moon's orbit. Specifically, most people think that the collision that formed the moon should have resulted in the moon circling
the Earth's equator. The moon actually orbits the Earth at a 10 degree angle to the equator. Some people have thought that this means that the collision theory explanation for the formation of the moon is incorrect. Fortunately, some scientists have just used some very fast computers to show that it is possible for a collision to break off a chunk of a planet and in the process form a moon that orbits like our moon does.

For more information, look on the internet at:

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