Last night my wife noticed how big the moon looked.  It was rising out of the Atlantic Ocean, like some large diced alien space craft.  The moon truly is amazing, but I had a thought trigger in my little pea brain, about something I read years ago.  The moon is technically falling towards earth.  Is that really true?  

     The answer is actually kind of frustrating.  I mean, it is sort of one of those yes and no answers, that always leaves me a little unsatisfied.  So, the same is true with any 2 orbiting bodies of mass.  Mass is the total number of electrons, protons, and neutrons that make up an object.  Gravity is an interaction between objects that have the property we call mass.   

     So, to try and simplify a whole bunch of really complicated physics, let’s break this down into the absolute simplest understanding.  Technically, as the moon moves around, orbiting the earth, the pull of the earth on the moon to fall, is balanced by the motion or inertia of the moon.  Meaning that the speed of motion of the moon balances out the falling attraction.  This results in an elliptical orbit, perfectly balanced to keep us all moving without slamming into one another.    

     I have read from several sources that say the moon is actually, slowly moving farther away from the earth.  Don’t get too excited, it is moving at a rate of 1 ½ inches per year.  This means that in a short 50 billion years, the moon will actually leave earth’s orbit, and orbit the sun as an independent body.  They say that the sun will die in 4.5 billion years. Regardless, I think things are going to stay the same for the foreseeable future.