Does Earth have a ring of debris?

1 Answer
May 1, 2016

Perhaps for a short time after the "big Thwack"!

And, it also has a bit of a debris ring now from space trash!


In Earth's early history, it is possible that it had rings of debris. When the Earth first formed by accretionary processes it got hit by a fairly large proto-planet that was in its orbital plane. This is called the Big Thwack or Big Splat by geologists! After this impact, some of the smaller proto-planet's material was absorbed by the Earth and the rest spun off to form our Moon. It is possible that during this time a debris ring formed around the Earth but over time, most of this material fell back to the Earth or Moon by gravitational attraction.

The other ring that is developing around Earth now is space crap! Thousands of pieces of satellites, booster rocket debris and other space trash is now circling Earth as a human made ring. Although, it may not yet be visible from even the Moon just yet. The International Space Station must periodically boost itself into a higher orbit to avoid collisions with this trash and they also have an escape plan if a collision becomes unavoidable.