The Spaceship Moon Theory, also known as the Vasin-Shcherbakov Theory, is a hypothesis that claims the Earth's moon may actually be an alien spacecraft. The hypothesis was put forth by two members of the then Soviet Academy of Sciences, Michael Vasin and Alexander Shcherbakov, in a July 1970 article entitled "Is the Moon the Creation of Alien Intelligence?".
Vasin and Shcherbakov's thesis was that the Moon is a hollowed-out planetoid created by unknown beings with technology far superior to any on Earth. Huge machines would have been used to melt rock and form large cavities within the Moon, with the resulting molten lava spewing out onto the Moon's surface. The Moon would therefore consist of a hull-like inner shell and an outer shell made from metallic rocky slag. For reasons unknown, the "Spaceship Moon" was then placed into orbit around the Earth.
Their hypothesis relies heavily on the suggestion that large lunar craters, generally assumed to be formed from meteor impact, are generally too shallow and have flat or even convex bottoms. Small craters have a depth proportional to their diameter but larger craters are not deeper. It is hypothesized that small meteors are making a cup-shaped depression in the rocky surface of the moon while the larger meteors are drilling through a five mile thick rocky layer and hitting a high-tensile "hull" underneath.
Additionally the authors note that the surface material of the moon is substantially composed of different elements (chromium, titanium and zirconium) from the surface of the Earth. They also note that some moon rocks are older than the oldest rocks on Earth.
They postulate that the moon comprises a rocky outer layer a few miles thick covering a strong hull perhaps 20 miles thick and beneath that there is a void, possibly containing an atmosphere.
In 1975, Don WilsonTemplate:Disambiguation needed published Our Mysterious Spaceship Moon in which he compiled what he considered supporting facts for this hypothesis.
In 1976 George H. Leonard published Someone else is on the Moon in which he reprinted numerous NASA photographs of the lunar surface and suggested that large scale machinery was visible in these pictures. Readers have generally not been able to see these artifacts.Template:Citation needed
Suniti Karunatillake of Cornell University suggests that there are at least two ways to determine the distribution of mass within a body. One involves moment of inertia parameters, the other involves seismic observations. In the case of the former, Karunatillake points out that, "One such parameter, the normalized polar moment of inertia, is 0.393+/-0.001, which is very close to that for a solid object with radially constant density (0.4; for comparison, Earth's value is 0.33). As for the latter, he notes that the moon is the only planetary body besides Earth on which extensive seismic observations have been made. These observations have constrained the thickness of the moon's crust, mantle and core, suggesting it could not be hollow. Karen Masters of University of Portsmouth similarly suggests that, based on the behavior of objects interacting with the gravitational field of the moon, we can determine the mass of the moon. Given the observable size of the moon, we can then calculate the density, which strongly rejects the notion that the moon could be hollow.
In popular culture
In the series by science fiction author David Weber, Heirs of Empire, the moon is in fact a giant space ship which arrived 50,000 years ago. The population of Earth are the descendants of the crew of the ship, who abandoned it after it was damaged in a mutiny. In these books the moon is an artificial construct which was given a rocky outer coating as a form of camouflage. The three books in the series are Mutineers' Moon, The Armageddon Inheritance and Heirs of Empire.
In the science fiction series Star Wars, The Death Star is an artificial moon made of metal, both a few hundred kilometers across.
In the anime series Gurren Lagann, Earth's moon is an artificially created humanity-extermination system put in place by beings from another dimension.
Notes and references
- Vasin, Mikhail (July 1970). "Is The Moon The Creation of Intelligence?".
- Wilson, Don W. (1975). Our Mysterious Spaceship Moon, 1st, New York: Dell.
- Leonard, George H. (1976). Someone else is on the Moon, 1st, David McKay.
- Suniti Karunatillake. Can we prove that the Moon isn't hollow?. Cornell University "Ask an Astronomer". Retrieved on 2008-02-05.
- Dr. Karen Masters. Is the Moon hollow?. Cornell University "Ask an Astronomer". Retrieved on 2008-02-05.
- Secrets of our mysterious spaceship moon by Don Wilson, Sphere, 1976, Dell; First edition (1975), Language: English, ISBN 978-0-440-06550-0
- Alien Agenda by Jim Marrs, HarperTorch (July 8, 1998), Language: English, ISBN 978-0-06-109686-0
- Moongate: Suppressed Findings of the US Space Program by William L Brian II, 1982, Future Science Research publishing Company, ISBN 0-941292-00-2
- Who Built the Moon? by Christopher Knight and Alan Butler, 2006, Watkins, Language: English, ISBN 978-1842931639