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Mass and Size Frequency Distribution of the Impact Debris from Disruption of Chondritic MeteoritesSince direct observation of the collision of asteroids in space is not always convenient for earthbound observers, we have undertaken simulations of these collisions using the NASA Ames Vertical Gun Range (AVGR). To simulate the collision of asteroids in space, and aluminum projectiles with velocities ranging from approx.1 to approx.6 km/sec were fired at 70g to approx.200 g fragments of chondritic meteorites. The target meteorite was placed in an evacuated chamber at the AVGR. Detectors, usually four, were set up around the target meteorite. These detectors consisted of aerogel and aluminum foil of varying thickness. The aerogel's purpose was to catch debris after the collision, and the aluminum foil.s purpose was to show the size of the debris particles through the size of the holes in the aluminum foil. Outside the chamber, a camera was set up to record high-speed film of the collision. This camera recorded at either 500 frames per second or 1000 frames per second. Three different types of targets were used for these tests. The first were actual meteorites, which varied in mineralogical composition, density, and porosity. The second type of target was a Hawaiian basalt, consisting of olivine phenocrysts in a porous matrix, which we thought might be similar to the chondritic meteorites, thus providing data for comparison. The final type was made out of Styrofoam. The Styrofoam was thought to simulate very low-density asteroids and comets.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Document Type
Conference Paper
VanVeghten, T. W.
(State Univ. of New York Plattsburgh, NY, United States)
Flynn, G. J.
(State Univ. of New York Plattsburgh, NY, United States)
Durda, D. D.
(Southwest Research Inst. Boulder, CO, United States)
Hart, S.
(California Univ. Santa Cruz, CA, United States)
Asphaug, E.
(California Univ. Santa Cruz, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 21, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2003
Publication Information
Publication: Lunar and Planetary Science XXXIV
Subject Category
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
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