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Penn Astronomers Discover Moon is Actually Extremely Close and Just Very Small


Photos by Gregory H. Revera / CC BY-SA 3.0; Juan / CC0; Max PIxel / CC0 (with edits)

Researchers from Penn’s department of Physics and Astronomy made another groundbreaking scientific discovery last Tuesday when they concluded that, contrary to centuries of astronomical data, Earth’s moon is actually extremely close and just very small. This new theory flies in the face of long-standing beliefs regarding the size of and our proximity to the natural satellite.

“We were shocked when the data showed that an average-sized person could reach up and touch the Moon,” said lead scientist Kelvin Quinn. “I tried it, and…there it was. Right above me. It was incredible.”

Months of preparation went into the experiments, as the researchers knew any findings which depart from commonly-held beliefs would be heavily scrutinized. “You can’t just come out and say, ‘Hey, the Moon is roughly the size of a bowling ball.’ You have to prove it.” said Quinn.

And prove it they did.

Now, researchers are considering the implications of the findings. “For example,” Quinn explained, “if there really is a ‘man on the Moon,’ he will have to be very small—smaller than any man to ever exist. Furthermore, if the Moon is made of cheese, there will not be enough for everyone. We as a society must decide how to approach these new problems.”

For now, however, shoot for the Moon. It'll be hard to miss.