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    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Default Re: How Powerful And Big Can An Asteroid Destroy A Planet?

    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    The problem is, the mass of the asteroid isn't the most important factor--its speed is. You could entirely destroy the Earth (e.g. exceed its gravitational binding energy) with a golf ball if you could make it go fast enough.
    Wouldn't it get converted to energy depending on how close it got to the speed of light?

    This is also bringing up a related question: what are the dividing lines between an asteroid being an asteroid, a planetoid (if those exist), a moon, or a planet? If a moon got flung out of orbit for some reason is it still considered a moon based on its size anyway, or is there another term for this? I never actually studied much astronomy.
    Last edited by Arcane_Secrets; 2019-10-18 at 11:29 AM.