Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Planetary science

The Moon's tilt for gold

The Moon's current orbit is at odds with theories predicting that its early orbit was in Earth's equatorial plane. Simulations now suggest that its orbit was tilted by gravitational interactions with a few large bodies. See Letter p.492

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.

$32.00

All prices are NET prices.

Figure 1: Collisionless interactions could have altered the early Moon's orbit.

Notes

  1. See all news & views

References

  1. Goldreich, P. Rev. Geophys. 4, 411–439 (1966).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  2. Pahlevan, K. & Morbidelli, A. Nature 527, 492–494 (2015).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Bottke, W. F., Walker, R. J., Day, J. M. D., Nesvorny, D. & Elkins-Tanton, L. Science 330, 1527–1530 (2010).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Ida, S., Canup, R. M. & Stewart, G. R. Nature 389, 353–357 (1997).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Walker, R. J. Chem. Erde 69, 101–125 (2009).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Touma, J. & Wisdom, J. Astron. J. 115, 1653–1663 (1998).

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  7. Ward, W. R. & Canup, R. M. Nature 403, 741–743 (2000).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Robin Canup.

Related links

Related links

Related links in Nature Research

Planetary science: Shadows cast on Moon's origin

Planetary science: The early Moon was rich in water

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Canup, R. The Moon's tilt for gold. Nature 527, 455–456 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1038/527455a

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/527455a

Search

Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing