Exploring Earth's Moon
|The Moon||Upcoming Visits||Past Visitors||Water & Ice|
|Gravity Maps||Molten Heart||Retroreflectors||Lava Flows|
|Love Numbers||Founder Ashes||Lunar Distance||Dung Beetle|
|Lunar Hotel||Moon Resources||Other Solar System Moons|
Love Numbers are named after Oxford mathematician Augustus E.H. Love who worked out mathematical theories of elasticity and waves in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The numbers are a measure of how much a planet's surface and interior move in response to the gravitational pull of other bodies nearby in space.
Love numbers for the relationship between Earth and its Moon seem to indicate the Moon has molten slush surrounding its core, according to scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Pasadena, California.
Researchers calculated the Love numbers from data gathered over the years by the Lunar Laser Ranging Experiment, which uses retroreflectors left on the Moon's surface by several U.S. and Russian missions in the 1960s and 1970s.