Earth and Mars Were Formed From Collisions of Large Bodies Made of Inner Solar System Material

Giant Asteroid Impacts Earth

International research team investigated the isotopic composition of rocky planets in the inner Solar System.

Earth and Mars were formed from material that largely originated in the inner Solar System; only a few percent of the building blocks of these two planets originated beyond Jupiter’s orbit. A group of researchers led by the University of Münster (Germany) report these findings on December 22, 2021, in the journal Science Advances. They present the most comprehensive comparison to date of the isotopic composition of Earth, Mars, and pristine building material from the inner and outer Solar System. Some of this material is today still found largely unaltered in meteorites. The results of the study have far-reaching consequences for our understanding of the process that formed the planets Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars. The theory postulating that the four rocky planets grew to their present size by accumulating millimeter-sized dust pebbles from the outer Solar System is not tenable.

Approximately 4.6 billion years ago in the early days of our Solar System, a disk of dust and gases orbited the young Sun. Two theories describe how in the course of millions of years the inner rocky planets formed from this original building material. According to the older theory, the dust in the inner Solar System agglomerated to ever larger chunks gradually reaching approximately the size of our Moon. Collisions of these planetary embryos finally produced the inner planets Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars. A newer theory, however, prefers a different growth process: millimeter-sized dust “pebbles” migrated from the outer Solar System towards the Sun. On their way, they were accreted onto the planetary embryos of the inner Solar System, and step by step enlarged them to their present size.

Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars

The four terrestrial planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. Credit: NASA/Lunar and Planetary Institute

Both theories are based on theoretical models and computer simulations aimed at reconstructing the conditions and dynamics in the early Solar System; both describe a possible path of planet formation. But which one is right? Which process actually took place? To answer these questions, in their current study researchers from the University of Münster (Germany), the Observatoire de la Cote d’Azur (France), the California Institute of Technology (USA), the Natural History Museum Berlin (Germany), and the Free University of Berlin (Germany) determined the exact composition of the rocky planets Earth and Mars.

“We wanted to find out whether the building blocks of Earth and Mars originated in the outer or inner Solar System,” says Dr. Christoph Burkhardt of the University of Münster, the study’s first author. To this end, the isotopes of the rare metals titanium, zirconium, and molybdenum found in minute traces in the outer, silicate-rich layers of both planets provide crucial clues. Isotopes are different varieties of the same element, which differ only in the weight of their atomic nucleus.

Meteorites as a reference

Scientists assume that in the early Solar System these and other metal isotopes were not evenly distributed. Rather, their abundance depended on the distance from the Sun. They therefore hold valuable information about where in the early Solar System a certain body’s building blocks originated.

As a reference for the original isotopic inventory of the outer and inner Solar System, the researchers used two types of meteorites. These chunks of rock generally found their way to Earth from the asteroid belt, the region between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. They are considered to be largely pristine material from the beginnings of the Solar System. While so-called carbonaceous chondrites, which can contain up to a few percent carbon, originated beyond Jupiter’s orbit and only later relocated to the asteroid belt due to influence of the growing gas giants, their more carbon-depleted cousins, the non-carbonaceous chondrites, are true children of the inner Solar System.

Martian Meteorite Elephant Moraine (EETA) 79001

The Martian Meteorite Elephant Moraine (EETA) 79001. The scientists examined these and other Martian meteorites in the study. Credit NASA/JSC

The precise isotopic composition of Earth’s accessible outer rock layers and that of both types of meteorites have been studied for some time; however, there have been no comparably comprehensive analyses of Martian rocks. In their current study, the researchers now examined samples from a total of 17 Martian meteorites, which can be assigned to six typical types of Martian rock. In addition, the scientists for the first time investigated the abundances of three different metal isotopes.

The samples of Martian meteorites were first powdered and subjected to complex chemical pretreatment. Using a multicollector plasma mass spectrometer at the Institute of Planetology at the University of Münster, the researchers were then able to detect tiny amounts of titanium, zirconium, and molybdenum isotopes. They then performed computer simulations to calculate the ratio in which building material found today in carbonaceous and non-carbonaceous chondrites must have been incorporated into Earth and Mars in order to reproduce their measured compositions. In doing so, they considered two different phases of accretion to account for the different history of the titanium and zirconium isotopes as well as of the molybdenum isotopes, respectively. Unlike titanium and zirconium, molybdenum accumulates mainly in the metallic planetary core. The tiny amounts still found today in the silicate-rich outer layers can therefore only have been added during the very last phase of the planet’s growth.

The researchers’ results show that the outer rock layers of Earth and Mars have little in common with the carbonaceous chondrites of the outer Solar System. They account for only about four percent of both planets’ original building blocks. “If early Earth and Mars had mainly accreted dust grains from the outer Solar System, this value should be almost ten times higher,” says Prof. Dr. Thorsten Kleine of the University of Münster, who is also director at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Göttingen. “We thus cannot confirm this theory of the formation of the inner planets,” he adds.

Lost building material

But the composition of Earth and Mars does not exactly match the material of the non-carbonaceous chondrites either. The computer simulations suggest that another, different kind of building material must also have been in play. “The isotopic composition of this third type of building material as inferred by our computer simulations implies it must have originated in the innermost region of the Solar System,” explains Christoph Burkhardt. Since bodies from such close proximity to the Sun were almost never scattered into the asteroid belt, this material was almost completely absorbed into the inner planets and thus does not occur in meteorites. “It is, so to speak, ‘lost building material’ to which we no longer have direct access today,” says Thorsten Kleine.

The surprising find does not change the consequences of the study for theory of planet formation. “The fact that Earth and Mars apparently contain mainly material from the inner Solar System fits well with planet formation from the collisions of large bodies in the inner Solar System,” concludes Christoph Burkhardt.

Reference: “Terrestrial planet formation from lost inner solar system material” by Christoph Burkhardt, Fridolin Spitzer, Alessandro Morbidelli, Gerrit Budde, Jan H. Render, Thomas S. Kruijer and Thorsten Kleine, 22 December 2021, Science Advances.
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abj7601

30 Comments on "Earth and Mars Were Formed From Collisions of Large Bodies Made of Inner Solar System Material"

  1. Undercover church | December 23, 2021 at 10:31 pm | Reply

    Interesting theory with still no actually evidence. According to scientists we all come from a monkey and life evoluted from nothing over billions of years. The earths magnetic field protects us from the suns radiation discliams this theory. How about – In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Been around from the beginning and the discovery of DNA backs it.

    • How about instead we notice the way the atoms just seem to want to stick together in surprisingly useful ways? Heck of a lot more useful than saying Gowdidit all the time.

  2. Enough nonsense, please. You people think that everyone that listened to you is stupid. After the earth was formed due to collision, water, air, cloud, human and other life came to settle on the earth and the sea out of none existent air and living things universe? Thanks.

  3. And pig came from monkeys

  4. It s amusing that so much happenstance was needed to create the earth we live on today and the recent proposition that *WE* are unique in the entire universe is tauted.
    Therefore it seems perfectly logical that it s been created by God!

  5. All not true, God created the earth and all that comes with, there is a book that tells us the whole story, its called a Bible, stop doing more research, its costing you money and time, Thank you so much, may the Lords grace be with you

  6. Must be nice to make theories and have people believe you and get paid.
    Nobody knows where we came from, when the earth was formed or when will it end. Keep guessing.

  7. All orbits begin their lives as a single mass of what is called quark plasma. This gamma ray emitting plasma is invisible and can make shapes. This plasma is what minimum entropy black holes are made of. The galaxies are shrapnel from the collision of two, maximum entropy objects that contained the mass of the observable galaxies. Our galaxy was spinning as a result and the plasma made a disk with a bulbous center. The center separated from the disk and our black hole was formed. The remaining massive disk was left to create the solar systems. Our solar system was spinning as well and made a disk just like our galaxy. The center separated from the disk and our Sun was born. Finally, again, the planets and their corresponding moons and rings used the exact same process. The inner planets are rocky because they cooled the fastest since they possessed the least energy. Quark plasma converts itself to potential energy by creating neutrons first on the surface. This gives the mass its first light of its life. The neutrons break down into hydrogen atoms and then they are connected to the constantly forming neutrons to create helium using the beta minus decay reaction. Heavier elements are filtering the energy from the quark plasma core more and more. Eventually, the surface goes dark and an atmosphere is able to form. Jupiter is the only planet that hasn’t completely finished its crust yet which is evident giving the massive radiation coming from the equator. The crust started at the poles and migrated to the equator.

  8. This is bs satan trying to discredit god

    • Maybe God slammed the two objects together. I don’t know.

      • Mike was just giving his knowledge. And Mike’s right , maybe God did slam them together, maybe he didn’t. But Mike don’t make you pay a percentage of money for his knowledge . Nor does he make you worship him on Sundays. So settle down people

  9. Obviously this article is just a made up story. Sorry but i dont buy it.

  10. Devendra Narayan | December 25, 2021 at 3:18 am | Reply


  11. Están bien locos lo único que sale de una explosión son cosas malas nunca he visto que ha salido algo bueno cuando hay una explosión

  12. Wonderful speculation, But not solid science. Very typical of astronomy these days.

  13. I’m not sure why my comment was deleted. Our current theories are not panning out. Orbits themselves are so incredibly delicate that they must have been created by a single mass initially. It is just plain scary how science continues to back a theory that has never worked.

  14. Don't Fall For The BS | December 25, 2021 at 6:51 pm | Reply

    Here come the god wackos crawling out of the woodwork to spread their paranoia and incessant need to feel important in the scheme of things.

  15. Why do people think that God created earth? Sorry to say but their is more then one God, and God’s don’t create worlds. They create life in those worlds. Earth was not God’s “creation”. I get that you guys have a religion but their are things that can go beyond God’s power. Maybe he did create life but no…not worlds.:)

  16. Idiots, God created the heavens and the earth and all that is in it. Amen

    • Two thoughts.

      Who made god? Before the beginning?

      And why does every christian prayer end with a dedication to an Egyption god, the one that oddball pharoh foisted on everyone, the one that got immediaitly chsed out of Egypt as soon as the phaoroh died? Did you ever think about that? Did you notice that ONLY SOME versions of the bible have Christ doing that. Did you ever think about that? The clear implication is, another god, a squatter, on the run from Egypt, is living in your gods house. Did you ever think about THAT?

  17. Entirely embarrassing. This is bunk. Science is rather humored, as am I. The Heavens declare the glory of God, not the wisdom of man, nor the randomness of nature. The signature of God is clearly seen in the image of every petal of every rose.

  18. Dang, you all are so polarized. Did it ever occur to any of you that both sides are ‘”right”? Maybe God did create everything, but if He is all knowing, wouldn’t he know every law of nature and everything about physics, chemistry, biology, and all other sciences, enough science to be the brain behind the making of the universe? I personally think that God answers the who and why questions and science answers the how. God created all this because he loves us and wants us to be happy and learn, and he created it all using all of the science that we know of today and more that we have yet to discover. So both arguments are right, it’s possible to be religious and believe in science too.

  19. Timothy Jess Paulson | January 2, 2022 at 4:15 am | Reply

    Leisel is the only one out of all of you that has any sense…I believe in people…I know we are all idiots…the only reason we think we are smart is because nobody has said to us…hold my beer!!! Haaa

  20. mehrdad aghakasiri tehran 00989332197646 | November 4, 2023 at 4:01 am | Reply

    The destruction of human civilization on earth) (part of the author’s life) I was introduced to the planets since I was in the third grade of elementary school, and I was very interested in astronomy and the planets of the solar system since I was a child, and at the age of 17, with books on the constellations of the stars, Our solar system, constellations and galaxies, modern astronomy, written by Isaac Asimov, Russian, and Astrophysics books written by Albert Einstein, which were fully explained about the structure of atoms of various elements, I got acquainted with these books, and in 1369, I became an official member of the Ministry of Culture and Education. As an inventor, my name is registered in that research organization and I wrote many books and articles about astronomy and understanding the solar system. In 1365, I was injured in the Qasr Shirin war zone, I got nervous and I don’t do dentistry, and I researched more about astronomy and astronomy and made many discoveries in astronomy on Earth and the solar system (Introduction) It has been at least hundreds of millions of years that The earth has life, the life of the earth has been in the hands of a variety of creatures. Tens of millions of years ago, due to the impact of a meteorite on the earth, the life of the dinosaurs was completely destroyed, but the life of single-celled organisms continued. The solar system is one of the rarest and most complex systems in the galaxy. It is milk. The scientists of the world believe that the water and oxygen in the earth came to the earth by meteorites. In this article, about how the life of the earth’s creatures is destroyed and the reason why meteorites hit the earth and the planets and moons of the solar system and the reason for the oil under the ocean shores. I will explain the cause of hydrogen gas in gaseous planets such as Neptune, Uranus, Saturn and Jupiter, and the reason for the reversal of the planet Venus, and the reason for the slow rotation of the arrow around itself and the fast rotation of gaseous planets. I will talk about the destruction of human civilization and explain why the stars and planets of these stars collided with the objects of the solar system. The moons of these planets became the stars along with these planets first collided with Neptune, Uranus, Saturn, Jupiter and finally the sun. Jupiter is still burning from the collision of very small stars. It is our solar system that caused many changes in the earth and solar system! (Table of contents) The cause of the destruction of human civilization on earth and traces of civilization on earth, Chapter 1! The cause of the sun’s collision with the two big arms of the Milky Way galaxy, the second season! The reason for the existence of hydrogen gas in Neptune, Uranus, Saturn and Jupiter, the third chapter! The reason for the reverse rotation of Venus and the slow movement of Jupiter, the fourth season! The reason for the presence of oil in the 30,000 thick layers of the ocean coasts, the fifth chapter! The reason for the rapid rotation of the planets of Jupiter and Saturn around themselves, the sixth chapter! The reason for the verticality of the Uranus equator and the tilting of the axis of Saturn, the seventh chapter! The reason for the existence of 234 moons around the planets of the solar system, chapter eight! (Chapter 1) There are traces left on the earth that show that people lived before us

  21. mehrdad aghakasiri tehran 00989332197646 | November 4, 2023 at 4:04 am | Reply

    Chapter 1) There are traces left on the earth that show that people lived on the earth before us humans! And before the life of the earth was completely destroyed, those humans shaped the continents and seas of the earth for us in the form of mammals, humans and birds! And it is not known how much time they had to do this, and it is not known how long they formed the continents and seas!? Because the pictures they drew are not very accurate, and everyone can’t understand if the seas and continents were in the form of terrestrial creatures or not by looking at a map of the earth. The people before us who lived on earth saw stars and planets. They had arrived!! who are coming towards our solar system and thought that life on Earth might be destroyed!? Revelations are renewed, maybe because of this word, the planet is renewed?! And they were so advanced that they knew that when life on Earth is destroyed, life will start again from bacteria and single cells!! And with the evolution of different creatures, humans will emerge from the species of animals and mammals!! That’s why they left the works that I said by changing the shape of land and seas in the form of living beings!! which we are going to explain, but it is difficult for some people to believe this issue because when the meteorites hit the earth and the moon, the amount of soil that was dumped on the surface of the earth was so large that it caused the shapes that were created by removing the earth’s soil and Moving the soil of the land so that humans can create the seas!! In some countries, for example, the eye of an animal that is the eye of a rhinoceros in the African continent of the Amazon Sea, or a mammal whose head is the head of this animal in the African continent and the horn of Africa is famous!! And on the forehead of that mammal is placed and the image of the head of a rhinoceros, which is seen on the map of Africa, Asia and Arabia by the machete cut by the hand of an Arab man!! The machete of that Arab man is from the Red Sea! There is a region in Saudi Arabia next to the Red Sea called “Cut off the Arab man’s hand with the trunk of an elephant holding a machete in his hand!” And the map of Khartoon Khartoon country is that elephant!! And these pictures tell that the head of the rhinoceros was cut off by the Black Forests and the Arabs!! Because of the expensive rhinoceros horn!! And these events took place on the earth before us humans and after the civilization was destroyed in the open earth, all these changes were made by humans!!! And the neck of this rhinoceros is Europe and its trunk is Asia! His hand is India! And the foot of this mammal is Cambodia! And there is a snake between the hands and feet of this mammal, which is the country between the snakes, and the map of the country between the snakes in Asia is like a snake!! And the country of India, friends, is like a mammal, the nipple of this animal is in the south of India, and an island that forms the country of Sri Lanka is exactly like a drop of milk extracted from the nipple of this animal!! In the Indian sea, humans before us worked by pouring soil in the oceans next to the coasts of the continents to create the shape of terrestrial creatures on the earth so that the continents resemble mammals or humans or birds!! Like the continent of America, which looks like a bird that is flying!!

  22. mehrdad aghakasiri tehran 00989332197646 | November 4, 2023 at 4:16 am | Reply

    They shaped!! In Southeast Asia, the map of the Philippines is a baby dinosaur!! that the meteorites cut his body, hands and feet into pieces in the form of many islands, but it is clearly known that this baby dinosaur came to the shores in the sea water and his mouth is completely open!! A little behind the baby dinosaur, there is an island bigger than the Philippines, in the north of the Australian continent, two countries named Jaya, Irene, Papua, and Guinea. These four are the names of two countries in South East Asia after Indonesia and Northwest Australia!! Search the names in Latin in Google, you will find them that are in the form of islands, and it is clear that these mammals were amphibians, dinosaurs, and humans before us drew and shaped their images!! But when three kilometers of soil were poured on the entire surface of the ocean floor, the water of the ocean rose three thousand meters, and the image that was made of a small dinosaur baby that was made on the island of the Philippines, because the height of the island was not much higher than the surface of the ocean, half of the island was submerged. You might not realize that the Philippine island is shaped like a dinosaur that went under water!!? Due to the spilling of soil, the planet that I mentioned has been destroyed, but the land surface of the country of Guinea is higher than the island of the Philippines, and on the island of Guinea, the image of a dinosaur can be seen completely. Carry !! Because the island is close to the Australian continent and it is easier and easier to carry soil than the Philippine island and the image of a dinosaur is completely visible on the whole island, but it is difficult to take the soil to the Philippine island and the soil of the Philippine island is much more than the island of Guina which is in the north Australia is located lower!! That’s why the shape of the dinosaur in the Philippine island is covered by ocean water and half of the dinosaur image is submerged, but it is clear that this island is the shape of a dinosaur!! If you look at that Philippine island through the eyes of a dinosaur. (Chapter 2) The cause of the collision of the arm of the Milky Way galaxy with the sun of the solar system, the collision of meteorites from the planets that disintegrated into the objects of the solar system started billions of years ago, the last collision of meteorites with the earth’s surface happened tens of millions of years ago, stars along with their planets They entered our solar system from the branch of the Milky Way galaxy, and these stars were hundreds of times lighter and smaller than the sun. If those stars were a quarter of the sun, the earth would have warmed up for several billion years and life would not have existed on the earth, considering the number of moons in the solar system. that the number of moons is about 234 moons that used to be planets in the Milky Way, it is known that hundreds of planets came to our solar system

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  23. Michael W. Clark | November 19, 2023 at 5:01 pm | Reply

    After checking the Expected Radius and comparing it to the actual Radius of all the Planets and Luna, there is a ” Mount Fugi ” type distribution with the center at the Asteroid belt. From the Sun Heading outward, the Numbers for the Actual Radius divided by the expected radius are as follows: Mercury = 80 % R, Venus = 101 % R, Earth and Luna are at 107 % R, Mars is 111 % R, Asteroid Belt, 2 planets missing, Jupiter = 155% R, Saturn = 129 % R, Uranus = 111 % R, and Neptune = 107 % Radius. Notice the eccentric excess supply symmetry on both sides of the Asteroid Belt. There was most likely a rwo planet collision at the Asteroid Belt. This provided excess materials for the excess growth of the planets. The closest and largest planets benefited the most, and the farthest away, and smallest benefited the least. It is like taking a split image of Fugi, where one half is normal, and one half is telephoto ( bigger ).

  24. Sf. R. Careaga, creator of EPEMC | December 26, 2023 at 8:01 pm | Reply

    Amazing how this is all wrong. Mostly because both Earth and Mars were rocky bodies belonging to Shamash dwarf star which split into our gas giants as it collapsed in a spiral towards the sun. Preliminary simulations show Scholz’s star could have pulled it off. But Saturn has the same angle of declination roughly as Mars and Earth and Earth has water of the same isotopes as Saturn’s rings. We need to stop ignoring mythohistorical evidence when it combines with scientific evidence to create a strong picture of what happened in our incredible history. And that includes the Bible and Babylonian. See epemcgateway dot com and learn more.

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