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Im wondering if anyone has knowledge about whether an impact with an asteroid can cause the Earth's rotation to change the opposite way?
If you strike a que ball from the top, a little offset from center, and you can make a Que ball start off going in one direction, but ends up going in another direction because of the force the impact has on a round objects mass.causing it to completly change it's normal rotational pattern. So I would say yes it is possible.
Why does Venus rotate the opposite direction as other planets?
Reverse spinning with dense atmosphere (92 times > Earth & CO2 dominant sulphur based).
Surface same degree of aging all over
Hypothetical large impact is not a sufficient answer
Assuming any object large enough to alter a planets rotation or even orbit would likely destroy most of its shape, yet Venus has retained a spherical property with a seemingly flat, even terrain indicating no volcanoes,and few if any visible meteor impacts. It would be fragmented and dispersed for billions of years. Even the question of what meteor, comet, asteroid composition could survive traveling that close to the sun's temperature, radiation, electromagnetic energy, solar flares, or gravity to equal a mass reactionary change as to alter it's spin.
originally posted by: DonVoigt
I like the ice skater analogy, but let me throw another analogy in along with it, I see everybody looking at it from a perspective as though the asteroid can only hit from the side, but think more along the lines of English on a Que ball. If you strike a que ball from the top, a little offset from center, and you can make a Que ball start off going in one direction, but ends up going in another direction because of the force the impact has on a round objects mass.causing it to completly change it's normal rotational pattern. So I would say yes it is possible.
Known as Theia, the Mars-size body collided with Earth, throwing vaporized chunks of the young planet's crust into space. Gravity bound the ejected particles together, creating a moon that is the largest in the solar system in relation to its host planet. This sort of formation would explain why the moon is made up predominantly of lighter elements, making it less dense than Earth — the material that formed it came from the crust, while leaving the planet's rocky core untouched. As the material drew together around what was left of Theia's core, it would have centered near Earth's ecliptic plane, the path the sun travels through the sky, which is where the moon orbits today.
Why do Earth and the other planets rotate at all? It will help to understand how our solar system formed. Almost five billion years ago, our solar system had its beginnings as a vast cloud of dust and gas. The cloud began to collapse, flattening into a giant disk that rotated faster and faster, just as an ice skater spins faster as she brings her arms in. The Sun formed at the center, and the swirling gas and dust in the rest of the spinning disk clumped together to produce the planets, moons, asteroids, and comets. The reason so many objects orbit the Sun in nearly the same plane (called the ecliptic) and in the same direction is that they all formed from this same disk. While the planets were forming, there was not much peace in our solar system. Clumps of matter of all sizes often collided, and either stuck together or side-swiped each other, knocking off pieces and sending each other spinning. Sometimes the gravity of big objects would capture smaller ones in orbit. This could be one way the planets acquired their moons.