Earth and the Moon (Space!) by Terry Allan Hicks

By Terry Allan Hicks

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Extra resources for Earth and the Moon (Space!)

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In 2008, researchers from Brown University in Rhode Island found the first evidence of water deep inside the Moon, and scientists are very anxious to find out whether significant amounts exist. However, the United States is not the only country interested in renewed exploration of Earth’s satellite. Russia plans to launch an unmanned mission that will both orbit and land on the Moon in 2012. Other countries that did not take part in the original space race are planning their own lunar projects. On October 22, 2008, India launched Chandrayaan-1, an unmanned spacecraft that will orbit the Moon for two years, taking clearer images and preparing for Chandrayaan-2, which is a mission designed to land a rover on the lunar surface in 2011.

National Areonautics and Space Administration (NASA)—The space exploration agency of the United States government. observatory—A place or structure used to observe celestial objects. physicist—A scientist who studies matter and energy. planetesimal—A small body of matter formed by the creation of the Sun or other star. radiation—Energy that is transmitted in waves or particles. regolith—Loose, dusty rock found on the Moon’s surface. rover—A motorized vehicle, manned or unmanned, that is used to travel on the surface of a body in space.

However, in recent years, temperatures on Earth have actually risen dramatically. It is now widely believed that the increase in global temperatures is caused by pollution that releases huge amounts of gases—especially carbon dioxide—into the atmosphere. This overabundance of greenhouse gases causes global warming, which is melting the polar ice caps, raising sea levels worldwide, and having many other damaging effects on Earth and its inhabitants. Venus experiences a similar greenhouse gas effect in its atmosphere.

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