What type of bomb would you need to destroy an asteroid?
If some of you ever wondered what it would take for an asteroid to be destroyed, we finally have the answer for you. A team of researchers from Russia decided to recreate the conditions of this event by destroying a small asteroid replica with a laser blast.
The data uncovered by the researchers
They found out that if they wanted to take out a 200 meter large asteroid they would have to launch a 3-megaton nuclear bomb. These measurements were obtained after the team scaled up the results they got from the small scale replica of this event. The asteroid replica was taken from the space rock that exploded in 2013 over Chelyabinsk.
Could this type of bomb ever be created?
Well, we do not what will happen in the future but we would like to provide you with a couple of examples. The two bombs that the US dropped in Hiroshima and Nagasaki had the explosive yield of 15 kilotons and 20 kilotons. Mathematically speaking, one megaton is 1000 kilotons. The biggest nuclear bomb that was made so far is the famous Tsar Bomba made by the Russians. The bomb had a yield of around 50 megatons.
They also concluded that one big nuclear explosion would be just as powerful as a number of smaller ones that would have the same combined cumulative energy as the first one.
Vladimir Yufa, one of the co-authors of this study wanted to say that one of their goals is to dry and deflect a possible incoming asteroid, rather than try and obliterate it. This could be a solution in the case of a small asteroid but if a big one ever had Earth on its trajectory path, the only solution would be to nuke it.