NASA has detailed, as it discovered a planetary collision in a closely located Solar System, how much damage would this type of event causes.
The space agency’s SOFIA spacecraft identified warm dust in a closely based planetary system, which suggests that it was superheated after two main cosmic bodies crashed into each other. An image from NASA depicts a ring of fire exploding from the inner part of each planet as both of them shatter under the powerful force.
The planet expelled rocks and gas, and any life, if there was life on these planets, would be erased in a matter of seconds.
NASA revealed more details about planetary collisions
NASA said: “This artist’s concept illustrates a catastrophic collision between two rocky exoplanets in the planetary system BD +20 307, turning both into dusty debris. “Ten years ago, scientists speculated that the warm dust in this system was a result of a planet-to-planet collision. Now, NASA’s SOFIA mission found even more warm dust, further supporting that two rocky exoplanets collided. This helps build a complete picture of our own solar system’s history.”
Even so, when planets and other cosmic objects crash into each other, the leftover debris and ejects can enable new bodies to form in space because gravity begins to gather together over billions of years.
“Such a collision could be similar to the type of catastrophic event that ultimately created our Moon,” NASA said.
The Moon’s formation
Some researchers believe the Moon took shape when a young planet, known as Theia, collided with Earth, hitting at a 4-degree angle about 4.5 billion years go. The result made chunks of Theia and Earth that were left overtake a new shape and eventually form the Moon. Pieces of molten rock from our planet allegedly coupled to the synestia, which enabled the Moon to take shape.
Sarah Stewart, professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences at the University of California, said: “The Moon is chemically almost the same as the Earth, but with some differences. This is the first model that can match the pattern of the Moon’s composition.”
Simon Lock, a graduate student at Harvard who first created the idea of synestias, said: “Our model starts with a collision that forms a synestia. The Moon forms inside the vaporized Earth at temperatures of four to six thousand degrees Fahrenheit and pressures of tens of atmospheres.”
Brian Dan is just getting his feet wet as a tech reporter but has already had his work featured in many major publications including Tech Spot and Tech Crunch. In regards to academics, Brian earned a degree in business from Fordham University. Brian has a passion for emerging technology and covers upcoming products and breakthroughs in science and tech.