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Russia calculates how to nuke an asteroid

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Russian scientists have been determining how to use nuclear weapons to protect the Earth from asteroids.

There's no denying that a sufficiently large space rock could prove catastrophic were it to ever hit the Earth - a fact that has prompted a renewed effort in recent years both to catalog any potential threats and to develop new ways of stopping an apocalyptic asteroid before it can hit us.

Read More: http://www.unexplain...uke-an-asteroid

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BeastieRunner

Considering they didn't do anything about the last one, how would they know?

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Waspie_Dwarf

Considering they didn't do anything about the last one, how would they know?

And they were supposed to shoot down a tiny asteroid that NO ONE knew existed how exactly?

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Harte

And they were supposed to shoot down a tiny asteroid that NO ONE knew existed how exactly?

Easy. With a phantom bomb.

Harte

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Infernal Gnu

Wouldn't the Russians just looovveee to be able to brag about saving the planet from an asteroid one day! I guess people would then forget all about their Crimean invasion and their brutality in Syria.

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Sundew

I wonder if pushing it with rocket engines would be "better?" If you know it's coming and it's still a long way out, you wouldn't have to nudge it much to have it miss earth. If it was close when discovered, then nukes it is!

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Imaginarynumber1

I say we just nuke the planet, that way it won't matter if an asteroid hits.

Problem solved.

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Gary Meadows

I say we just nuke the planet, that way it won't matter if an asteroid hits.

Problem solved.

It's really the only solution in the end. I mean, another century of humans? Ick.

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RoofGardener

Would a nuke actually WORK in space ?

I thought that most explosions - nuke's included - relied as much on air expansion for their impact as they do on expansion of the explosive material itself ?

A nuke - in a vacuum - would presumably just produced huge amounts of gamma rays ? (and light).

In an atmosphere, those gamma rays are absorbed by the surrounding air (and buildings I guess ? ), producing a pulse of rapidly expanding superheated plasma, which in turn produces the destructive force.

But in a vacuum ?

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Fedex

Roof... Do you realllllllly think that you thought of this and they didn't? Really?

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RoofGardener

Yup :)

If you could persuade a nuke to detonate on the asteroids surface, then it MIGHT do something (it does produce a 'fireball' - plasma, really - that eats everything it touches, but it is only a few dozen meters wide.. perhaps more for a really BIG bomb). But getting it to trigger at JUST the right millisecond would be tricky.

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paperdyer

Easy. With a phantom bomb.

Harte

Which opened the Phantom Zone and the asteroid went in there.

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paperdyer

I wonder if pushing it with rocket engines would be "better?" If you know it's coming and it's still a long way out, you wouldn't have to nudge it much to have it miss earth. If it was close when discovered, then nukes it is!

It sounds good in theory, but how do you attach the rockets to the asteroid? You can try crashing the rocket(s) into the mass but with the rockets have enough mass to move the asteroid?

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Harte

Would a nuke actually WORK in space ?

I thought that most explosions - nuke's included - relied as much on air expansion for their impact as they do on expansion of the explosive material itself ?

A nuke - in a vacuum - would presumably just produced huge amounts of gamma rays ? (and light).

In an atmosphere, those gamma rays are absorbed by the surrounding air (and buildings I guess ? ), producing a pulse of rapidly expanding superheated plasma, which in turn produces the destructive force.

But in a vacuum ?

The casing and the asteroid provide the plasma. The intense heat causes vaporization of anything in the surrounding area.

Harte

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Harte

It sounds good in theory, but how do you attach the rockets to the asteroid? You can try crashing the rocket(s) into the mass but with the rockets have enough mass to move the asteroid?

The word you're looking for there is thrust.

Yes, theoretically, rockets could be used to move an asteroid out of our path. This is the tech that the linked article refers to concerning projects that take a long time.

If you catch the asteroid a year or two before it hits you, it doesn't take much thrust to change the trajectory enough. But rockets aren't actually the way most of these other suggested theories would provide thrust, IIRC.

Harte

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Harte

Which opened the Phantom Zone and the asteroid went in there.

No, that's how the asteroids get out.

Harte

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Whatsinausername

Donald Trumps ego would surely deflect it

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nothinglizx2

I think the grid lazer used in Resident Evil could work. Just have it beamed from a satalite or satalites. If that isn't enough, slam some satalites into the meteors at just the right angle adjusting for tilt, spin and rate of spin.

By: Tonie Mia-anne Barraco

JIC

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Harte

That won't do it.

Harte

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Noteverythingisaconspiracy

The best way to use a nuke to move an asteroid is to detonate it below the surface. That way the bomb wil turn some of the surrounding material into plasma, acting as a kind of rocket propellant, thus changing the orbit of the asteroid. The problem with this approach is that you need to know what the composition of the target is before you fire the missile. If it is just a loose collection of rocks (as many asteroids are) you risk ending up with many smaller impactors, instead of just one large one. If the target is a metallic asteroid you risk that the nuke will simply ricochet before it buries itself, inflicting no damage in the process. So a nuke is certainly one solution to an incomming asteroid, but it is in no way a fool proof solution in all cases.

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