We all remember the movie “Armageddon” with Bruce Willis in the lead role, where a group of people heroically saved Earth from destruction by destroying threatening her with a meteorite. Since then (and before) many are thinking: “But what if the threat really is?”. And to simulate this situation, a group of Russian scientists have created a miniature asteroid and destroyed it with the existing earth technologies.
After study is a group of Russian scientists from the “Rosatom” and their colleagues from the Moscow physical-technical Institute (MFTI). For their experiments, the research team developed a technology of making a model of the asteroid. It was made on the basis of the known composition of stony meteorites. The model properties of the asteroid were taken into account its chemical composition, density, porosity and rigidity. As a weapon against asteroids used 3 laser devices: “Iskra-5”, “Luch” and “Saturn”. Their laser beam was modified in line with the size, but in the experiments were adjusted to a predetermined in the model, the power, and then went to the replica of the asteroid, mounted in a vacuum chamber. During the experiments, the laser hit the asteroid in time, not exceeding 30 nanoseconds.
But scientists did not stop: to assess the success of the destruction they used the data obtained after the fall of the Chelyabinsk meteorite. So, after entering the atmosphere it broke into small particles, which did not cause much damage. The scale of the destroyed particles of the experimental asteroid does not exceed the size of the particles “Chelyabinsk brother”.
“If dvuhsotmetrovyj the asteroid will be broken into pieces with a diameter of 10 and a mass 1000 times smaller than the asteroid, the resulting debris will not pose a danger. However, this conclusion is valid only for 200-meter asteroid entering the atmosphere. But we, nevertheless, managed to prove that a short laser pulse directed at the asteroid, causing devastating effects similar to a nuclear explosion in the most cosmic body.”