The other night I was listening to The Merseyside skeptics podcast Be Reasonable hosted by Michael Marshall interviewing Alan Butler. Mr. Alan idea is that the moon and the asteroid Ceres are artificial satellites designed and placed in their current orbits by time travelling future humans who are trying teach modern humans a lesson of some kind. These time travellers destroyed a planet 4 billon years ago called Vulcan and re-assembled some of these pieces to create the Moon and Ceres. One claim is that Ceres orbit is 2.73 more distance than the Earth to Sun distance. The distance between the Earth and Sun is 1 astronomical unit or AU. The distance of Ceres from the Sun changes as it goes through its orbit from its closest approach of 2.56 AU to 2,98 AU It does go through a point were it is 2.73 Au from the sun but that is a small part of its orbit. The reason that 2.73 is significant is that the moons orbital period around the Earth is 27.322 days and Mr. Butler claims that this means that the time travelling humans did this on purpose as a clue for us to figure out. Another clue is that the Earth is 81 times the mass of the moon and the moon is 81 times the mass of Ceres. The moon is actually 78.58 times the mass of Ceres. The densities of these objects are different which accounts for the difference in mass. There was a theoretical planet called Vulcan in the 1800’s to describe some issues with Mercury’s orbit but has been scrapped since general relativity showed you did not need any such planet. In the beginning of the solar system there could of been one or more planets in the region of the asteroid belt but these planets if they did exist were torn apart by Jupiter’s and the Sun’s gravity pulling in opposite directions. Also most of the mass of the asteroid belt has been ejected out of the solar system by these gravitational forces. Ceres is thought to have an rocky core a layer of liquid water and an icy crust which might allow life under the crust like the moons of Europa, Ganymede, Titan and Enceladus. The moon itself was formed after a Mars sized object collided with the Earth about 4.5 billion years ago. After the collision there was a cloud of molten rock that gathered together to form the moon. There could of been smaller objects that either joined with the moon or fall back to the Earth. Most of these facts and theories can be easily looked up on the internet. Mr Butler seems more interested in tying together ancient units together and numerology than anything else.