Author Topic: Deflecting or destroying dangerous asteroids  (Read 13986 times)

Offline whitelancer64

Re: Deflecting or destroying dangerous asteroids
« Reply #120 on: 08/22/2017 04:17 PM »
On top of the impactor we put a smaller version of the proposed Orion damper with a large nuke behind it. The impactor now has a high delta-V. Just Before impact, we detonate the nuke and give the impactor at huge boost in speed. Plus any energy the nuke itself Projects around the plate.
What do you gain by transferring energy from the nuke, to the impactor and then to the target? Why not cut out the middle man?

In general, nukes have the highest energy density, so launching a combination of nukes + kinetic impactors gives you less capability than using the same mass of nukes alone. Kinetic impactors are technically and politically simpler, so they are attractive in cases where they provide sufficient energy in a reasonable launch mass.

Yes, really should have thought about that. How ever I read only 40% of the nukes energy is radiation and what not. If we put a gas between the impactor and the nuke. Could we also harwest the pressure wave in som manner and get more energy out of it?

NASA has a small side project called Hypervelocity Asteroid Intercept Vehicle (HAIV), which proposes sending an impactor and a nuclear device along the same mission. The impactor hits first, creating a small crater which the nuclear device then detonates in. Similar to your idea.
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