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Asteroid hitting one of the Poles......

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posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 04:10 PM
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Everyone has heard nearly all the theories about asteroids hitting the Earth somewhere in one of the oceans, or large cities. But what about hitting one of the poles? With the heat that is released due to a strike from and asteroid, how much glacial ice and snow would be instantly vaporized and how would that effect the rest of the planet? Would that take the next deluge out the picture (probably not) or cause some other type of unknown catastrophe?




posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 10:49 PM
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It would just fracture off the glacier I AM ASSUMING. If it was big enoughe to dissapate the whole glacier we would probably all be dead.

Good question though, never thought of it!



posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 10:58 PM
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reply to post by OrigiVal
 


Well...thinking about it....

IF all of the Arctic ice (North Pole) melts....won't affect sea levels. There is no land up there...all ice is already floating....think of your iced tea, in a glass...let the ice melt...what happens to the water level?

HOWEVER....ice that resides on land masses, and melts off...THAT will have an effect. AND, the inclusion of freshwater into the briny sea water will definately affect certain currents....currents that define and control weather patterns, in both hemispheres.

For instance....the 'Gulf Stream', in the Atlantic Ocean. It circulates, North from the Caribbean, along the US Eastern SeaBoard, bringing mostly temperate weather, eventually, to Northern Europe. Disrupt this flow, by changing dramatically the salinity of the Ocean....the waters will change density, and the cycle will alter.

Back to asteroid impacts: Since there aren't any immediately threatening us, I'd relax....



posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 11:06 PM
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reply to post by OrigiVal
 


I would think that a bigger problem would be if the asteroid hit one of the poles at such an angle that the inertia may cause a polar shift of the earth's axis.



posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 11:10 PM
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It depends a lot on the size of the asteroid but probably not a whole lot of difference from a sea strike. You end up with water vapor from ice or water vapor from water. If it's big enough to vaporize enough water you're going to get heavy rain either way.

If it's bigger still, big enough to affect a large part of the polar ice, it's also going to send a lot of the sea floor into the atmosphere (again, same thing either way). All that crud is going to cause all the other stuff we know about.

Don't fret. After a certain point, it don't matter much where the dang thing hits.



posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 11:13 PM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


Professor....considering the mass of our planet, just how much incoming mass, at what velocity, would you calculate to be sufficient to actually cause our planet to begin to 'wobble' (more than it already does...)??

Plenty of meteorites have been found on the expanses of Antarctica....some verified to have come from Mars, even. But, they're little....just the fragments that make it through re-entry.

So, we'd have to assume a very large meteor (rare nowadays....unless you expect a near-earth asteroid to be perturbed and head our way...which should take, oh....a few thousand years...)

But, I digress.......

*edit*...or, more succinctly....what Phage said!!!!

[edit on 4/21/0909 by weedwhacker]



posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 11:16 PM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


I have a hunch that with an impactor large enough to change the axis of rotation, there wouldn't be much left to worry about it.



posted on Apr, 22 2009 @ 12:40 AM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


That seems like the usual academic approach to end of the world scenarios. Baah! It lacks originality.

A Much bigger problem would be if a large enough asteroid hit the Earth at an angle near the equator in the same direction as the rotation.

If it did this with sufficient force to send it spinning at a slightly higher speed, the rotation speed could counter the force of gravity, if only just a little.

Think spinning pool ball

I am not suggesting that it would throw chunks and people into the vacuum of space. Just a fraction of an inch would probably wipe out all non-microbial life on the planet.

Once the resistance of the atmosphere exhausted the momentum of the ejection, things would drop back to Earth, come to rest gain momentum and be tossed again. Like a giant vibrator.

If the falls were not far, and repeated falls did not kill you, eventually something heavy would. It would be a very bumpy ride for a very long time.

It would turn the earth into a giant pulverizer.

So how would repeatedly bouncing a fraction of an inch wipe everything bigger than a microbe?

Liquifaction, like what happens during an earthquake. Only constant and everywhere on the planet at the same time.

Everything not a part of the Earth's crust would act like a liquid, splashing up and down with air and water between them. All the dirt and rock would be in a constant state of motion, up and down. When you came down you would sink into that roiling mess among the rock dirt and pulverizing debris.

A few hardy souls would be lucky enough to be in boats when it happened. They might sail on the surface of the mess for a while until the boats were sanded away by the constant motion. A ship on the ocean would have no where to go but someplace which was solid crustal rock. The oceans might eventually drain under the liquified land and the land flow into the oceans filling them to an even sludge.

Someone hire me to write the screenplay!

I think that is a much more interesting way to end humanity than the usual movie plot junk. Don't you?





[edit on 22-4-2009 by Cyberbian]

[edit on 22-4-2009 by Cyberbian]



posted on Apr, 23 2009 @ 06:42 PM
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That seems like the usual academic approach to end of the world scenarios. Baah! It lacks originality.

Then you know nothing about me. My background is far from Academic. I spent the majority of my life in the business world, and running a corporation. Hardly the typical academic.



posted on Apr, 23 2009 @ 11:52 PM
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If your talking big enough to knock the earths axis around , Phage is right, there wouldnt be anything left to worry about.


If were talking about a chixilub sized event there are very big differfences in whether it hits continental crust or impacts in an ocean basin.

In the case of on oceanic impact, the impactor can easily pierce the thin oceanic crust and transfer most of its energy to the mantle. The siesmic energy is passed tghrough the mantle and focused around the core and exits on the opposite side of the planet. This is one mechanism for how mantle plumes can start the formation of large igneous provinces, such as the deccan traps and siberian traps.
Another effect of an impact in water is that the vaporized water will retain the heat from the impact much much longer in the atmosphere.

on the other hand a large impact on a continent will have most of its energey reflected back into space, since the thicker stronger continental crust will withstand the impact forces better.



posted on Apr, 24 2009 @ 12:30 AM
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reply to post by weedwhacker
 


I'm pretty sure if all the ice melts you will see sea levels rise. Take your glass filled with tea example. Now take freeze it and throw more ice on top of it so it come out of the glass. While its frozen it wont go over the sides because it goes vertically higher then the glass. Now let the puppy thaw and you will have all the water that was ice above the glass line on the floor.

Now how much it would rise is a good question considering water expands as it freezes.



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