Earth is the planet on which we live, the 3rd planet from the Sun. Questions using this tag should be about Earth the planet and not Earth-like planets nor earth, as in dirt or soil.

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31
votes
8answers
10k views

Would it matter if the Earth rotated clockwise?

In the Futurama episode "That Darn Katz!" they save the world by rotating the Earth backwards saying it shouldn't matter (which direction Earth rotates). If Earth rotated clockwise and remained in ...
5
votes
4answers
849 views

Why doesn't the Earth leave you as soon as you escape it?

I've always wondered, that since the Earth is moving at a very fast velocity around the Sun, why is it that when astronauts leave the Earth, the Earth doesn't immediately move away from them at ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

What will happen if a gamma-ray burst hits the Earth?

Is there any probability that a gamma-ray burst (GRB) could affect the Earth?
15
votes
1answer
209 views

Impact location that created the moon

I was reading an article today about the 1000th orbit of the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, and as many of you know NASA created an animation that simulates the history of the moon. It is speculated ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

How far into space does one have to travel to see the entire face of earth?

Virgin Galactic will take passengers aboard SpaceShipTwo as high as 65 miles above the surface of the earth. But from this altitude, passengers will only be able to see a certain segment of the ...
8
votes
5answers
457 views

sun-moon-earth anomaly

When one looks at the sun and the moon in the sky together, why is it that the illuminated crescent of the moon does NOT "point" at the sun? (More correctly the perpendicular bisector of the straight ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Earth-Centered Inertial (ECI) reference frame as approximate inertial frame of reference

In many practical applications, one can consider the Earth-Centered Inertial (ECI) reference frame approximately as an inertial reference system, though strictly speaking, it is non-inertial. Is ...
12
votes
5answers
10k views

How does gravity work underground?

Would the effect of gravity on me change if I were to dig a very deep hole and stand in it? If so, how would it change? Am I more likely to be pulled downwards, or pulled towards the edges of the ...
3
votes
1answer
154 views

Why isn't sunset time in sync with solstice?

The winter solstice in the Northern Hemisphere in 2011 is on December 22. But if I look at the sunset times for a location such as Washington, DC on the USNO site, the sunset time starts reversing ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How much of sky can be seen on a typical night from a mid-latitude location?

I'm at about 40deg north so, assuming a clear southern horizon, I can't see things below about -30 or so (I actually don't know how far south). I also have a large portion that is circumpolar so it's ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Video of Earth spinning?

If the Earth is spinning or rotating at a really fast speed, why haven't we seen any videos from space of it spinning when we get a lot of photos of it?
6
votes
1answer
190 views

Axial Tilt and precession rate of exoplanets

The Earth's axis is 23.5 degrees away from othogonality to the ecliptic, and it takes about 26 000 years for it to precess fully. I have neither an intuitive sense nor the formula for precession ...
3
votes
3answers
222 views

On what planar regions are the Earth, Moon.. for that matter, all astronomical bodies, placed in the Universe?

When we are on Earth, we look UP in the Sky to see the Moon. How do we have to look at Earth from Moon.. Is it the way ? If so, how are these bodies actually placed in the space? Are all astronomical ...
10
votes
2answers
733 views

If the Earth didn't rotate, how would a Foucault pendulum work?

How does the Foucault pendulum work exactly, and would it work at all, if the Earth didn't rotate?
7
votes
3answers
115 views

Are there any Earth-Meteorites on Earth?

A follow-on from this question, if meteorites can come from Mars, it seems they could have come from Earth and ended up back here (though I'm guessing that to be less likely). Do we have any evidence ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

Argument for proving Earth-Centered Earth-Fixed (ECEF) reference frame is non-inertial

Today I heard an argument to prove that the Earth-Centered Earth-Fixed (ECEF) reference frame is non-inertial. It seriously doesn't make any sense to me but I also heard that same argument was made by ...
1
vote
4answers
913 views

Is the earth expanding?

I recently saw this video on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJfBSc6e7QQ and I don't know what to make of it. It seems as if the theory has enough evidence to be correct but where would all ...
4
votes
2answers
145 views

Assuming that the Sun wouldn't evolve into a red giant, how long would the Earth's atmosphere last?

It's not going to last forever - Jeans Escape is going to eventually act on the atmosphere after trillions of trillions of years: see http://faculty.washington.edu/dcatling/Catling2009_SciAm.pdf
25
votes
11answers
9k views

What is the simplest way to prove the Earth is round?

Assume you've come in contact with a tribe of people cut off from the rest of the world, or you've gone back in time several thousand years, or (more likely) you've got a numbskull cousin. How would ...
11
votes
1answer
66 views

Why did the june 2011 lunar eclipse last so long?

It was kind of hard to miss the lunar eclipse this week, although I didn't see it in person (Sod's law means that on every relatively major astronomical event clouds cover where I am). From what I ...
27
votes
4answers
6k views

Why is a new moon not the same as a solar eclipse?

Forgive the elementary nature of this question: Because a new moon occurs when the moon is positioned between the earth and sun, doesn't this also mean that somewhere on the Earth, a solar eclipse ...
8
votes
1answer
378 views

Could the earth have another moon?

First, to clarify: I'm not asking if perhaps there's a moon that we haven't found yet. The question is, theoretically, would the earth be able to have another stable moon in addition to the current ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

Does the Moon's core still contain significant heat?

On earth, using earth-sheltering techniques can significantly reduce the temperature fluctuations on a structure. Would the same statement be true as well on the Moon? Does the Moon's core still ...
-4
votes
1answer
292 views

How can the Earth's day increase and its rotation slow down at the same time? [closed]

I heard that the Earth rotation is slowing down, but I also heard the Earth's length of day is increasing. Does the two theories go together or conflict with each other?
13
votes
2answers
669 views

Is the length of the day increasing?

In Frontiers of Astronomy, Fred Hoyle advanced an idea from E.E.R.Holmberg that although the Earth's day was originally much shorter than it is now, and has lengthened owing to tidal friction, that ...
12
votes
5answers
4k views

Does Earth have a code name?

Everything we discover in the sky get eventually a code name, like NGC 7293, Simeis 147, etc. Does Earth/Moon have a code name too? Or it is just Earth/Moon, etc.?
-5
votes
1answer
18k views

What is the extent of Earth's gravitational pull? [closed]

Where the gravitational pull of Earth exist up to? What distance from Earth it will be zero? How do the skydivers fly at a same altitude? Won't they feel gravitational pull? What is the Earth's ...
-3
votes
1answer
442 views

Gravity anomaly in Lacnov, Slovakia: Gravity ashamed

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4qxwqNqL-Nc http://tvnoviny.sk/sekcia/spravy/technologie/v-lacnove-sa-predmety-kotulaju-do-kopca.html (Sorry: above links in Slovak.) Can someone explain this to me? ...
3
votes
3answers
298 views

Ozone Hole in the South Pole

Perhaps this should be a chemistry question, but it seems to have physics attributes. There's a perennial ozone "hole" around the south pole created by destruction from Cl based chemicals like CFCs. ...
31
votes
8answers
44k views

Why doesn't the Moon fall upon Earth?

Why doesn't the Moon, or for that matter anything rotating another larger body, ever fall into the larger body?
9
votes
4answers
7k views

How long would a lever have to be to move the planet Earth?

Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world. -Archimedes How long would that lever have to be? That is to say, how long a lever ...
7
votes
6answers
7k views

How fast is Earth moving through the universe?

As the galaxy is moving and the solar system orbiting the galaxy and the Earth orbiting the sun. So how fast is each object moving and what is the fastest we move at? Do we even know how fast the ...
25
votes
4answers
6k views

Would you be weightless at the center of the Earth?

If you could travel to the center of the Earth (or any planet), would you be weightless there?
6
votes
5answers
3k views

What sustains the rotation of earth's core (faster than surface)?

I recently read that the earth's core rotates faster than the surface. Well, firstly, it's easier to digest the concept of planetary bodies, stars, galaxies in rotation and/or orbital motion. But, ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

Escape velocity from long ladder

The escape velocity of earth is roughly $11 kms^{-1}$. However, what if a long ladder was built extending out of Earth's atmosphere and considerably more. Then if something was to climb up at much ...
12
votes
2answers
347 views

How are the northern lights produced?

Although I've never seen it myself, I hear the northern lights are a sight to be seen! I know they're related to the Earth's magnetic field but I don't know much more about them. What is the physical ...
4
votes
1answer
895 views

Formula for getting time of sunrise at a particular location?

Is there a formula that can get sunrise at a particular latitude and longitude (and elevation from sea level)? If so, what it is? (Why does it work?)