Asteroids may be harder to break

A Johns Hopkins study discovered that asteroids my be stronger than previously thought. The study carried out using a new understanding of rock feature and computer modelling method to simulate asteroid collisions. The findings will be published on March 15 on Icarus.

“We used to believe that the larger the object, the more easily it would break, because bigger objects are more likely to have flaws. Our findings, however, show that asteroids are stronger than we used to think and require more energy to be completely shattered”, says Charles El Mir (Johns Hopkins University department of Mechanical Engineering).

In the early 2000s, a similar simulation was carried out which proved that an asteroid will be completely destroyed by a collision. In the new study however, the same scenerio was entered into a new computer model called the Tonge-Ramesh model which accounts for the more detailed processes during an asteroid collision which the previous research did not account for.

Author: Oyetunji

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