Yes it is, due to a transfer of Earth’s rotational momentum to the Moon’s orbital momentum as tidal friction slows the Earth’s rotation. That increase in the Moon’s speed is causing it to slowly recede from Earth (about 4 cm per year), increasing its orbital period and the length of a month as well.
To picture what is happening, imagine yourself riding a bicycle on a track built around a Merry-go-Round. You are riding in the same direction that it is turning. If you have a lasso and rope one of the horses, you would gain speed and the Merry-Go-Round would lose some. In this analogy, you and your bike represent the Moon, the Merry-Go-Round is the rotating Earth, and your lasso is gravity. In orbital mechanics, a gain in speed results in a higher orbit.
Latest posts by anulyok (see all)
- Which country has a single-colored flag? - January 25, 2009
- Why is Friday the 13th is considered to be an unlucky day? - January 19, 2009
- What’s the difference between black and green teas? - December 19, 2008