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SEE IT: A city in China wants to launch an artificial moon into orbit by 2020 — here’s what would happen if Earth really did have two moons

  • A city in China wants to launch an artificial moon into orbit by 2020.
  • China’s moon would be far less massive than our current moon, but their ambitious idea made us wonder what would happen if Earth had a second moon that was the same mass as our current moon.
  • If this happened, it would cause sea levels to rise, flooding coastal cities like New York and Singapore.
  • The extra pull of the moons would also slow down the Earth’s rotation, causing the day to get longer.

A city in China wants to launch an artificial moon into orbit by 2020 as a way to reduce energy needs by replacing street light with artificial moonlight. Regardless of whether or not they succeed, their ambitious idea really made us wonder…

What would happen if Earth had two moons?

Well, it wouldn’t be pretty.

Imagine the Moon’s identical twin comes hurtling by and is trapped by Earth’s gravity. As it settles into orbit, halfway between Earth and our original moon, it yanks violently at the oceans. In the real world, this is how our original Moon helps generate tides. So, the second moon would amplify the effect. Causing peak tides that would be 6 times higher, eroding shorelines and flooding many of our world’s greatest cities including: New York, Singapore, and London — gone.

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