posted on Oct, 6 2011 @ 12:24 AM
Originally posted by weirdguy
This is all really interesting. I am still left wondering how anything can hit the sun and not be
torn apart or vaporized before making contact. Does anyone have any ideas?
Consider a chunk of ice with a diameter the size of Texas. Now you're shining a REALLY REALLY bright, incredibly hot light on it. Maybe you're even
going at it with blowtorches. Or covering it with lava. It's still going to take time to melt all the way through it. Many objects simply have too
much mass & thickness to be burned off by the solar radiation before impact. And keep in mind that H2O has an very high specific heat, meaning it's
hard to change its temperature and phase. Thus why it takes hours to make ice cubes, and why people put water in hot water bottles.
Furthermore, what do you think happens to the mass when it's "burned off"? It just "vanishes"? Nope. Ice heading for the sun has a certain amount
of linear momentum toward the sun. The resulting melted water has the same linear momentum in the direction of the sun. Steam will still have the
same momentum, though it may also be ejected off at angles, and would be more prone to dissipation by the solar wind. Indeed, we saw some of the
material melting/fracturing/vaporizing and forming the wider tail of the object. But not nearly enough was ejected to disperse the entire object.
Take a small chunk of ice which melts under the application of a hair dryer in 1 second. Now throw that chunk of ice at the hair dryer. Would it
melt partially, fully? Would the resulting water still short something out in the hair dryer?
All about the numbers.
In the end it's all a matter of degree and composition. How big are these objects, how fast and what precisely are they made of. But I don't see any
scientific impossibility or implausibility in some comets surviving to hit a star.
edit on 6-10-2011 by Observer99 because: edit