Do We Really Need the Moon?

Synopsis: Through an immersive combination of footage, photos and 3D CGI, this documentary reveals how different the Earth might be if the moon wasn't exactly where it is now. How does a rock ...
Genre: Documentary
60 min

The gravitational force of the Moon causes the oceans to bulge slightly.

And as the Earth spins,

this bulging produces high and low tides.

The size of the tides

depends on the distance between the Earth and the Moon.

The laws of physics are very clear about this.

The closer two things are, the more they attract each other,

the greater the gravitational force.

So we get the tides we do because the Moon is where it is, nearly a quarter of a million miles away.

But what if the Moon were closer?

If the Moon were a just a little closer than it is today

the tidal bulge would grow.

Low tides would be lower,

high tides would be higher.

And any low-lying coastline would be flooded.

But what if the Moon were much closer?

Five times, 10 times, 20 times closer than it is today.

How would that affect the tides and life here on Earth?

Another rush hour in London.

But this evening, as the sun sets,

a huge Moon rises,...

..20 times closer than normal.

This super-sized Moon exerts a super-sized gravitational force,...

..400 times stronger than we're used to.

And it creates a mighty tidal bulge.

Sea water pours across the British Isles,

London is flooded.

Hours later, the same tidal bulge hits the east coast of America.

And the story is the same.

It's New York's turn to disappear underwater.

A city submerged,...

..and all the work of the Moon.

Eventually, of course, the tide subsides.

And the waters retreat.

This scenario may seem rather far-fetched, like the plot of some disaster movie.

But something similar has happened.

Once upon a time, when the Moon was newly formed,

it really was so close, and it really was so powerful.

Let me take you back to the earliest days of our planet,

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Submitted on August 05, 2018


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"Do We Really Need the Moon?" STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 27 May 2020. <>.

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