Do you have adblock enabled?
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Network World)   No bomb powerful enough to destroy an on-rushing asteroid, sorry Bruce Willis   (networkworld.com) divider line 77
    More: Cool, Bruce Willis  
•       •       •

4781 clicks; posted to Geek » on 08 Aug 2012 at 2:36 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



77 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

Archived thread

First | « | 1 | 2 | » | Last | Show all
 
2012-08-08 12:10:02 PM  
I thought we've decided that blowing it up is a bad idea and that we should use gravity ships to tow them out of an impact trajectory.
 
2012-08-08 12:16:36 PM  
Yeah, you don't have to blow it up, you just have to make it turn like 1/4 of a degree.
 
2012-08-08 12:42:41 PM  
There's also the little detail that even if you split an asteroid of that size, the resulting debris that did hit the Earth, even if the two big pieces missed, would be enough to wipe us out Cretaceous style. You don't need an asteroid "the size of Texas" to ruin Earth's shiat. A rock the size of Manhattan would do just fine.
 
2012-08-08 01:54:18 PM  
You guys are missing the point. THE WORLD NEEDS A BIGGER BOMB!
 
2012-08-08 02:06:14 PM  
What if we hit it earlier, like way earlier than it's orbital pass- couldn't we nudge it into a different course?
 
2012-08-08 02:09:22 PM  
Did they not see Malfoy explain it with the closed fist?
 
2012-08-08 02:25:46 PM  
Good, we need a little dust in the air to cool us down.
 
2012-08-08 02:40:10 PM  
Wouldn't the scary tag be more appropriate?
 
2012-08-08 02:59:27 PM  
Antimatter bomb.
 
2012-08-08 03:00:15 PM  
TFA: the device would need to be about a billion times stronger than the biggest bomb ever detonated on Earth -- the Soviet Union's 50 megaton hydrogen bomb "Big Ivan" -- in order to save the world the asteroid.

Thank god the article the grammar.
 
2012-08-08 03:03:05 PM  
Wouldn't that depend on the size of the asteroid?
 
2012-08-08 03:04:32 PM  
What about super huge poles extending out into space with some rubber bands stretched across them?
 
2012-08-08 03:06:42 PM  

Do the needful: What about super huge poles extending out into space with some rubber bands stretched across them?


Are you the ACME CEO?

JC
 
2012-08-08 03:11:16 PM  
is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?
 
2012-08-08 03:22:46 PM  

zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?


www.michaelbrowntoday.com

"If you only wish to bury bombs, there's no limit to the size".
 
2012-08-08 03:23:01 PM  

Because People in power are Stupid: What if we hit it earlier, like way earlier than it's orbital pass- couldn't we nudge it into a different course?


That's always been my take on it.

Moving it by just a tiny degree from far enough, and by the time it get's close, it'll miss by quite a bit.

If anything, the last thing we'd want is a broken to million of pieces cloud of mini asteroids hitting the planet.

We just need to ensure that it's gonna miss the moon and not end up in some sort of gravity pulled boomerang trajectory.

It anything, don't send a bomb, send a very powerful engine to push it into such an angle.
 
2012-08-08 03:24:05 PM  
Push the Moon in front of it. Geez, do I have to think of EVERYTHING?
 
2012-08-08 03:26:07 PM  

This About That: You guys are missing the point. THE WORLD NEEDS A BIGGER BOMB!


Even bigger than Disney's John Carter of Mars?
 
2012-08-08 03:28:30 PM  

dragonchild: TFA: the device would need to be about a billion times stronger than the biggest bomb ever detonated on Earth -- the Soviet Union's 50 megaton hydrogen bomb "Big Ivan" -- in order to save the world the asteroid.

Thank god the article the grammar.


hehe
 
2012-08-08 03:34:24 PM  

zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?


Smaller than youd think, but it mostly depends on what youre using as fissionable material. We used plutonium specifically because you dont need very much, to reach critical mass, but i dont know if other materials would have the same... volatility. I guess you could build a bomb out of 250k of americium-243, but i dont know if the boom would be as big.
 
2012-08-08 03:59:20 PM  
Next these physics geniuses will figure out that you can't really ramp a car over a concrete carrier to take out a helicopter, while jumping out completely unharmed at the last moment.

/but the rest of us already knew that
 
2012-08-08 04:00:36 PM  
img715.imageshack.us
 
2012-08-08 04:01:11 PM  

zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?


There are limits to practicality with a two stage weapon design. Not so much inherent in the physics, but in the implementation.

The smaller you can make the secondary, physically, the more even the compression you can get. The longer it is, the more likely you're going to get some funky boundary instability that'll turn your nice symmetric squeeze into some funky Munroe effect fizzle. I'd guess, too, that you'd eventually hit some propagation time limit causing a toothpaste-squeeze failure even with the primary's x-rays doing the illumination of your HDPE.

I dunno, maybe you could make a different design than the ones we use altogether that might work better, but if you need one device to blow up the asteroid that has to be a teraton yield or something, then you've got a lot of design work to do.

(tongue in cheek) it would be easier to just use Proteus on it.
 
2012-08-08 04:04:18 PM  

erewhon: zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?

There are limits to practicality with a two stage weapon design. Not so much inherent in the physics, but in the implementation.

The smaller you can make the secondary, physically, the more even the compression you can get. The longer it is, the more likely you're going to get some funky boundary instability that'll turn your nice symmetric squeeze into some funky Munroe effect fizzle. I'd guess, too, that you'd eventually hit some propagation time limit causing a toothpaste-squeeze failure even with the primary's x-rays doing the illumination of your HDPE.

I dunno, maybe you could make a different design than the ones we use altogether that might work better, but if you need one device to blow up the asteroid that has to be a teraton yield or something, then you've got a lot of design work to do.

(tongue in cheek) it would be easier to just use Proteus on it.


Odds are we'd see it far enough out to launch a mission of some kind. An unmanned Orion could nudge it out of the way quite nicely.
 
2012-08-08 04:05:45 PM  

zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?


According to wikipedia, no. A true thermonuclear device ... can be infinitely scaled. However, past a certain point, you're just blowing up more air than you are buildings. Since the effects radiate in all three dimensions from the source of the explosion you'll eventually get better bang for your buck by using multiple smaller bombs.

Take for instance, one bomb that results in an explosion the size of a basketball. Even if you place the center of the ball on the ground, you're only affecting a diameter of about twelve inches - most of which is up away from a target. Now if you take the same volume, but seperate it into ping-pong balls, you can spread them over several feet since the height of the explosions are now only an inch or so.

And as a landmine, it's be extremely impractical. It'd only blow up once, and destroy or set off any conventional mines nearby. Instead of an invading force worrying if they're going to drive over a bomb, they know nothing's there now.
 
2012-08-08 04:05:52 PM  

dragonchild: TFA: the device would need to be about a billion times stronger than the biggest bomb ever detonated on Earth -- the Soviet Union's 50 megaton hydrogen bomb "Big Ivan" -- in order to save the world the asteroid.

Thank god the article the grammar.


"Save the cheerleader the world"?
 
2012-08-08 04:08:26 PM  

MadAmos: Odds are we'd see it far enough out to launch a mission of some kind. An unmanned Orion could nudge it out of the way quite nicely.


this Orion?

OR THIS ORION?
 
2012-08-08 04:10:54 PM  

Karac: And as a landmine, it's be extremely impractical. It'd only blow up once, and destroy or set off any conventional mines nearby. Instead of an invading force worrying if they're going to drive over a bomb, they know nothing's there now.


but how else can I get rid of my chickens and nuclear weapons all at once?
 
2012-08-08 04:11:58 PM  

MadAmos: Odds are we'd see it far enough out to launch a mission of some kind. An unmanned Orion could nudge it out of the way quite nicely.


I don't think that's the case. Odds are we wouldn't even see it until it was far too late; asteroids are small and don't reflect much. We'd have to be looking in the right place at the right time. We didn't know about our most recent near-misses until afterwards.
 
2012-08-08 04:19:54 PM  
Headline contains "no bomb powerful enough" and nobody's mentioned "Ishtar" or "Gigli".

What has become of the old Fark I knew and loved?
 
2012-08-08 04:21:05 PM  
I think they misinterpreted a number of things from the movie that would be contributors:

1) The "size of Texas" comment was likely not a diameter measurement, but a rough reference of mass comparison to help the President interpret the 97.6 billion (likely tons) comment coming from the engineer. This study took the largest possible measurement, called it a diameter, and multiplied it into a volume. Not a charitable interpretation.

2) Composition and density of the asteroid will change the energy needed by multiples of a thousand very easily. Granite vs. iron vs. whatever. Remember, they had to punch through in the bad landing zone had a large amount of compressed iron to get through before they got to a softer rock during the drill. They might have been drilling down to a very soft and easily fractured rock. Thus more energy could have gone into separating the hemispheres.

3) The point of the "drill point" was to rest on a fault line, meaning there may have been a very small amount of rock that needed to split to break the halves apart. Most of the split may be been from the natural irregularities running through the asteroid. They chose that side of the rock to minimize the amount of rock that needed to be fractured to split the asteroid. The explosion at the end confirms this idea.

4) The force exerted would be dependent on how confined the device was. This is alluded to several timed in the film (the firecracker analogy).
 
2012-08-08 04:34:40 PM  
no plan to deal with asteroids would involve trying to blow up the asteroid by drilling a bomb or bombs into an asteroid. Deflection is the best way to deal with asteroids. Though the idea of a gravity probe was interesting. An object launched from Earth with enough mass to pull the asteroid with it into deep space.
 
2012-08-08 04:38:36 PM  
THIS RIGHT HERE IS WHY WE NEED TO BEGIN WORK O MATTER TO ENERGY CONVERSION SHEEPLE! WE NEED BIGGER BOMBS! E=MC2 MEANS BIGGEST BOOM EVAR!

//Seriously, matter conversion would be the biggest thing since fire.
 
2012-08-08 04:39:55 PM  
Wow, my grammar and sentence structure sucks today. Try previewing. Ok, let's try this again -

I think they misinterpreted a number of things from the movie:

1) The "size of Texas" comment was likely not a diameter measurement, but a rough reference of mass to help the President interpret the 97.6 billion (likely tons) comment from the engineer. This study took the largest possible measurement, called it a diameter, and multiplied it into a volume. Not a charitable interpretation.

2) Composition and density of the asteroid will change the energy needed by multiples of a thousand. Granite vs. iron vs. whatever. Remember, they had to punch through compressed iron on the "bad" landing zone before they got to a softer rock. They might have been drilling down to a very soft and easily fractured material. Thus more energy could have gone into separating the hemispheres instead of cracking it.

3) The purpose of the chosen depth and location for drilling was to reach a fault line, meaning there may have been only a very small amount of rock to split to break asteroid apart. Most of the "split" may be been from the natural fault line running through the asteroid. The explosion confirms this idea at the end of the movie.

4) The force exerted would be dependent on how confined the device was. This is alluded to several times in the film (the firecracker analogy).
 
2012-08-08 04:43:35 PM  

zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?


no limit. hydrogen bombs increase their output by essentially just dumping on more H to the fire.
 
2012-08-08 04:46:26 PM  

imfallen_angel: Because People in power are Stupid: What if we hit it earlier, like way earlier than it's orbital pass- couldn't we nudge it into a different course?

That's always been my take on it.

Moving it by just a tiny degree from far enough, and by the time it get's close, it'll miss by quite a bit.

If anything, the last thing we'd want is a broken to million of pieces cloud of mini asteroids hitting the planet.

We just need to ensure that it's gonna miss the moon and not end up in some sort of gravity pulled boomerang trajectory.

It anything, don't send a bomb, send a very powerful engine to push it into such an angle.


Those are the the questions I wish they had focused on:

Assuming the mass is x, and the speed towards the earth is y, how much thrust would you have to apply (and at what point) to move the trajectory to a safe range? How big would the "engine" need to be? How would you "catch up" to the asteroid to place the engine?
 
2012-08-08 04:49:09 PM  
while a gravity probe is an interesting concept what mass would it take to actually deflect an asteroid. I would expect at least 10% of the asteroid's mass would be enough to deflect it but i don't really know about that part. The thing there though is if we can build a rocket that can launch such a mass into orbit then the same rocket can be attached to the asteroid to deflect it with.

There is a final question that isn't answered. What effect would a nuke have in a vacuum? Any nuclear explosion we've ever seen has happened inside an atmosphere with several tons of air to act as a reaction mass if you will. Does the presence of this gas effect the yield of the bomb?
 
2012-08-08 05:13:53 PM  
warned you

upload.wikimedia.org

never shoot me down
 
2012-08-08 05:22:09 PM  

FarkedOver: Antimatter bomb.


Sure, now all we need to do is wait for a good special on antimatter at Home Depot.
 
2012-08-08 05:32:12 PM  

21-37-42: Those are the the questions I wish they had focused on:

Assuming the mass is x, and the speed towards the earth is y, how much thrust would you have to apply (and at what point) to move the trajectory to a safe range? How big would the "engine" need to be? How would you "catch up" to the asteroid to place the engine?



I know...

What about some sort of solar sail?

What about a series of detonations so to create a series of multiple waves that would cause a growing increase by each blast?

What about having a projected blast, using a rocket with a shield to push the wave so to increase it's strength by means of a parabolic effect?

Without an atmosphere, the blast of a bomb would be far from the same effectiveness as on a planet, which is why I consider that something that would provide thrust would be more effective.
 
2012-08-08 06:16:50 PM  

relcec: zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?

no limit. hydrogen bombs increase their output by essentially just dumping on more H to the fire.


It's not that simple. Scaling up presents issues that are non-trivial. Mostly around instability in high compressions and timing.
 
2012-08-08 06:33:05 PM  
Of course the asteroid in that "movie" was ridiculously oversized.

A more realistic mile-wide asteroid would devastate the planet yet would be pretty easily vaporized with a direct nuke hit of appropriate size.
 
2012-08-08 06:34:26 PM  

FarkedOver: Antimatter bomb.


Problem with that is, you have to make the antimatter, then store it , then put it in a bomb. All on earth ... also fark that idea.

Hitting it with a few 100 MT bombs in the same spot over a period of time might heat the surface enough to deflect it's trajectory. Like someone else said a couple degree course change far enough out would be plenty.
 
2012-08-08 07:09:23 PM  
No shiat...isn't this old news?

All we need to do is find a blind black guy to reverse the polarity and modify the deflector dish to utilize the warp engines.
 
2012-08-08 07:15:27 PM  

The All-Powerful Atheismo: Of course the asteroid in that "movie" was ridiculously oversized.

A more realistic mile-wide asteroid would devastate the planet yet would be pretty easily vaporized with a direct nuke hit of appropriate size.


You couldn't vaporize a mile diameter chunk of rock all that easily. You'd need about 100MT for igneous rock. Maybe a bit more. Nickel-iron, that I don't have rule-of-thumb calculators for.
 
2012-08-08 07:25:42 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: FarkedOver: Antimatter bomb.

Sure, now all we need to do is wait for a good special on antimatter at Home Depot.


Go ask CERN, it is a by product of particle accelerators. Unless you snag it in a magnetic field it'll just pop back out of existence but they do have rather strong magnets there. They can probably supply you with the 'magnetic bottles' needed to transport it back home as well.

We've already ferried anti-particles around on airplanes, it's a faff and I'm sure the expensive 'bottle' was guarded less some baggage handler steal it but beyond that not a problem.

I didn't say getting your hands on a stable vial of AM would be cheap now did I?
 
2012-08-08 07:33:40 PM  
here is a nice impact effects calculator Link
It includes major effects to the earth, energy released ect... or such as this....fun....
Your Inputs:

Distance from Impact: 100.00 km ( = 62.10 miles )
Projectile diameter: 100.00 km ( = 62.10 miles )
Projectile Density: 1000 kg/m3
Impact Velocity: 9000.00 km per second ( = 5590.00 miles per second ) (Your chosen velocity is higher than the maximum for an object orbiting the sun)
Impact Angle: 12 degrees
Target Density: 2750 kg/m3
Target Type: Crystalline Rock
Energy:

Energy before atmospheric entry: 2.12 x 1031 Joules = 5.07 x 1015 MegaTons TNT
The average interval between impacts of this size is longer than the Earth's age.
Such impacts could only occur during the accumulation of the Earth, between 4.5 and 4 billion years ago.
Major Global Changes:

The Earth is not strongly disturbed by the impact and loses negligible mass.
3.56 percent of the Earth is melted
The impact does not make a noticeable change in the tilt of Earth's axis (Depending on the direction and location of impact, the collision may cause a change in the length of the day of up to 6 minutes.
The impact does not shift the Earth's orbit noticeably.
 
2012-08-08 07:35:54 PM  

Vaneshi: Quantum Apostrophe: FarkedOver: Antimatter bomb.

Sure, now all we need to do is wait for a good special on antimatter at Home Depot.

Go ask CERN, it is a by product of particle accelerators. Unless you snag it in a magnetic field it'll just pop back out of existence but they do have rather strong magnets there. They can probably supply you with the 'magnetic bottles' needed to transport it back home as well.

We've already ferried anti-particles around on airplanes, it's a faff and I'm sure the expensive 'bottle' was guarded less some baggage handler steal it but beyond that not a problem.

I didn't say getting your hands on a stable vial of AM would be cheap now did I?


Having more than a handful of particles, now, that's the trick. The more you have, the stronger the bottle has to be exponentially. They're usually charged - mostly CERN makes positrons - and the more you have the more they repel each other. It is a problem.
 
2012-08-08 07:48:06 PM  
Does this mean Anne Margaret won't be coming sir?
 
2012-08-08 08:00:33 PM  

erewhon: relcec: zedster: is there a practical limit to how large we could make a nuke? I understand the limit for mounting it on a rocket, but if you remove that and set out to make a nuclear landmine, how big could we go?

no limit. hydrogen bombs increase their output by essentially just dumping on more H to the fire.

It's not that simple. Scaling up presents issues that are non-trivial. Mostly around instability in high compressions and timing.


pretty sure that is what staging is for.
 
Displayed 50 of 77 comments

First | « | 1 | 2 | » | Last | Show all

View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
On Twitter





In Other Media


  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report