View Single Post
Old September 3 2013, 04:12 PM   #85
Re: Barely-legible graphics canon?

Christopher wrote: View Post
jpv2000 wrote: View Post
I think the speed of the object plays a factor. Christopher mentioned a shuttle traveling at "relativistic speed" could do that much damage.
Yes, that's right. Kinetic energy equals mass times velocity squared. So something traveling at, say, a thousand times the velocity of the Chicxulub asteroid would only need one millionth of the mass to do an equal amount of damage.

According to Edward Muller's Antimatter Calculator ( the Chixulub asteroid energy was around 100,000,000 Megatons. According to this( a 12,500 pound object(the size of a twin otter air craft) traveling at 250,000 Kilometers a second would hit with a force equal to 42,348 Megatons.

so while I don't think a shuttle could do that kind of damage (then again we don't know how much a shuttle weights I plugged in weight of a large light aircraft) and while the energy is clearly less it worth remembering that the shuttle would hit with a force equal to 1000 times the large nuclear bomb ever tested.

Put another way a gram object would hit with a force equal to 7 kilotons or it would take a 2 gram object to hit with the force of the hiroshima bomb

Just to put it perspective
serdogthehound is offline   Reply With Quote