Stabilization of the Earth's obliquity by the Moon

  title={Stabilization of the Earth's obliquity by the Moon},
  author={J. Laskar and F. Joutel and P. Robutel},
ACCORDING to Milankovitch theory1,2, the ice ages are related to variations of insolation in northern latitudes resulting from changes in the Earth's orbital and orientation parameters (precession, eccentricity and obliquity). Here we investigate the stability of the Earth's orientation for all possible values of the initial obliquity, by integrating the equations of precession of the Earth. We find a large chaotic zone which extends from 60° to 90° in obliquity. In its present state, the Earth… Expand
ABSTRACTThe Earth’s obliquity is stabilized by the Moon, which facilitates a rapid precession of the Earth’sspin-axis, de-tuning the system away from resonance with orbital modulation. It is however,Expand
The variation of a planet's obliquity is influenced by the existence of satellites with a high mass ratio. For instance, Earth's obliquity is stabilized by the Moon and would undergo chaoticExpand
Obliquity variations of a moonless Earth
Abstract We numerically explore the obliquity (axial tilt) variations of a hypothetical moonless Earth. Previous work has shown that the Earth’s Moon stabilizes Earth’s obliquity such that it remainsExpand
Habitable planets with high obliquities.
It is shown that a significant fraction of extrasolar Earth-like planets may still be habitable, even if they are subject to large obliquity fluctuations, and that Earth's climate would become regionally severe in such circumstances. Expand
Pre-late Heavy Bombardment Evolution of the Earth's Obliquity
The Earth's obliquity is stabilized by the Moon, which facilitates a rapid precession of the Earth's spin axis, detuning the system away from resonance with orbital modulation. It is, however, likelyExpand
Climate friction: A possible cause for secular drift of Earth's obliquity
We investigated one of the mechanisms of secular drift of Earth's obliquity, called “climate friction,” due to the feedback from the periodic variation of solar insolation and the glacial cycles. WeExpand
The future large obliquity of Jupiter
Aims. We aim to determine whether Jupiter’s obliquity is bound to remain exceptionally small in the Solar System, or if it could grow in the future and reach values comparable to those of the otherExpand
Exo-Milankovitch Cycles I: Orbits and Rotation States
The obliquity of the Earth, which controls our seasons, varies by only ~2.5 degrees over ~40,000 years, and its eccentricity varies by only ~0.05 over 100,000 years. Nonetheless, these smallExpand
Chaos in the Solar System
Abstract.The implications of the chaotic evolution of the Solar System are briefly reviewed, both for the orbital and rotational motion of the planets. In particular, Why Venus spins backward ? canExpand
Instability and chaotic motion for some fictitious satellites of Venus and Mars
Among the remarkable differences between inner and outer planets, we can mention the striking scenario of their satellite system : while in general, the giant planets have a rich satellite system,Expand


Comments on the long-term stability of the Earth's obliquity
Abstract Continued tidal evolution of the Earth-Moon system will lengthen the day and expand the lunar orbit. Both of these changes increase the present 26,000-year equinoctial precession period. InExpand
A numerical experiment on the chaotic behaviour of the Solar System
LAPLACE and Lagrange made an essential contribution to the study of the stability of the Solar System by proving analytically that, to first order in the masses, inclinations and eccentricities ofExpand
The chaotic motion of the solar system: A numerical estimate of the size of the chaotic zones
Abstract In a previous paper (J. Laskar, Nature 338, (237–238)), the chaotic nature of the Solar System excluding Pluto was established by the numerical computation of the maximum Lyapunov exponentExpand
Confirmation of resonant structure in the solar system
Abstract Using a semianalytical secular theory, Laskar (1989, Nature 338, 237–238) computed the orbits of the planets over 200 million years and found that their motion, and especially the motion ofExpand
Astronomical theory of the Pleistocene ice ages: A brief historical review
Abstract This paper traces the evolution of the astronomical theory of the Pleistocene ice ages from its origin in the work of Adhemar and Croll, through its quantitative transformation in the handsExpand
Theory of the rotation of the rigid earth
An analytical theory is developed for planes normal to the angular-momentum axis, to the figure axis, and to the rotational axis of the triaxial rigid Earth. One of the purposes of this paper is toExpand
Tidal Rhythmites: Key to the History of the Earth's Rotation and the Lunar Orbit
The recent recognition of cyclically laminated tidal rhythmites provides a new approach to tracing the dynamic history of the Earth-Moon system. Late Proterozoic (-5650 Ma) elastic rhythmites inExpand
Milankovitch and Climate
1 2 2 . 2 d J. Adem , A· Bergzr , Ph. Gaspar , P. Pest1aux an J.P. van Ypersele 1 Centro de Ciencias de la Atmosfera, UNAM, 04510 ~exico D.F. Universit~ Catholique de Louvain, Institut d 'AstronomieExpand
Chaotic Evolution of the Solar System
This calculation confirms that the evolution of the solar system as a whole is chaotic, with a time scale of exponential divergence of about 4 million years, and indicates that the Jovian planet subsystem is chaotic. Expand
The measure of chaos by the numerical analysis of the fundamental frequencies. Application to the standard mapping
Abstract The method of analysis of the chaotic behaviour of a dynamical system by the numerical analysis of the fundamental frequencies developed for the study of the stability of the solar systemExpand