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Impact of Multi-layered Spherical Ice Targets

Burchell, Mark J., Harriss, Kathryn (2022) Impact of Multi-layered Spherical Ice Targets. International Journal of Impact Engineering, 168 (10). p. 1. ISSN 0734-743X. (doi:10.1016/j.ijimpeng.2022.104294) (KAR id:95464)

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The catastrophic disruption of tri-layered spherical icy bodies is reported. The bodies are 19 cm in total diameter, with a central core, an intermediate water layer and an icy surface (each layer respectively approximately 25, 55 and 20% of the total radius). Their response to high-speed impact is investigated at laboratory scales by firing 1.5 mm diameter glass spheres at the targets at speeds in the range 0.9 – 3.2 km s−1 and an ice layer thickness normalised to projectile diameter of typically 20 – 30. The energy density to just break apart such a body (defined as an event where the mass of the largest fragment post-impact is ½ the original target mass) is (3.1±0.1) J kg−1. This is significantly less than that found for similar sized solid ice spheres (18 ± 0.7) J kg−1, water filled ice spheres (16.25 ± 1.35) J kg−1 or hollow ice spheres (25.5 ± 0.5) J kg−1 indicating that the presence of a solid layer beneath an internal ocean, can influence disruption, effectively weakening the body.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1016/j.ijimpeng.2022.104294
Uncontrolled keywords: Ice; Layered targets; Cratering; Catastrophic disruption
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy > QB651 Planets, Minor
Q Science > QC Physics
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Natural Sciences > Physics and Astronomy
Funders: Science and Technology Facilities Council (
Depositing User: Mark Burchell
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2022 08:50 UTC
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2022 08:23 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Burchell, Mark J.:
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