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Does the mass of Earth change as time goes by ? Is it getting lighter or heavier ?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    millions of tons of space dust is falling onto earth evry year

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The Earth IS getting slowly heavier. But not because the poplulation is increasing, as the previous person says.

    Let me address why growing population is not increasing the mass of the Earth first. Then I'll say why the mass of the Earth is increasing.

    Imagine that the Earth is a closed system. (We're not sending stuff into space. Interstellar debris isn't coming into our atmosphere) Mass cannot be created or destroyed without some serious Einstin-esque stuff happinging. More people are being born, yes. But they are consuming more resources. As we grow, we use the 'stuff' of the food we eat to give ourselves more mass. So, quite literally, that roast beef sandwich I ate last week is a part of me now. (At least the part of the sandwich that didn't end up in the toilet.) Animal bodies are literally machines that take parts of their environment in and incorporate it . So. . . . there might be more people, but we are eating more. NO NET CHANGE IN THE MASS OF THE EARTH.

    However, two thing are happening that affect the answer to this question:

    1) We're sending stuff into space.

    2) Stuff from space is landing on the Earth.

    Most of our 'Space Junk' is still a part of the Earth System, though. And scientists include it with the mass of the Earth. So we're going to ignore Number One.

    Outer space stuff (Meteors that don't completely burn up, extraterrestrial dust. . . . that kind of stuff.) is constantly bombarding the planet. The earth gets thousands of pounds of space junk landing on our planet every year.

    So, um, long story short (too late) We're slowly getting heavier.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Yes, material from space does add to the earth's weight. Expressed as a percentage of the planet's overall weight this is an infinitesimal amount though. Human beings being born has nothing to do with the overall weight since their weight is gained from materials already present. Although I say with some certainty that some materials are burned and some of their gases may escape the atmosphere but not in any amount near that which rains down upon us daily.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    since every day more humans are born adding to the weight and the fact that millions of tons of space dust fall to earth yearly, I'd have to go with logic and say its getting heavier.

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  • 1 decade ago

    matter is matter and it will always weigh the same however the earth may get heavier due to cosmic dust

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  • 1 decade ago

    it's gaining weight everyday from micro meteorites

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  • 1 decade ago

    It remain same.....but some other important area to concentrate.

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