Poor old Jupiter has had a rough childhood after getting a massive hit from a mega-Earth

www.theregister.co.uk | 8/15/2019 | Staff
bethtetleybethtetley (Posted by) Level 4
Click For Photo: https://regmedia.co.uk/2019/08/14/jupiter_smash.jpg

Jupiter may have started life as a dense rocky planet that only became more gas-like after a massive newborn planet smashed right into it 4.5 billion years ago, according to new research.

The paper, published in Nature on Wednesday, describes the scenario. A giant planetary embryo ten times as massive as the Earth, crashed head first into proto-Jupiter as the Solar System's planets were forming in the morass of debris encircling the Sun.

Andrea - Isella - Co-author - Paper - Assistant

Andrea Isella, co-author of the paper and an assistant professor of astronomy at Rice University in the US, described the impact hypothesis. “Because it’s [the impacting body] dense, and it comes in with a lot of energy, the impactor would be like a bullet that goes through the atmosphere and hits the core head-on.”

The collision breaks would have broken Jupiter’s core and the material inside would be dispersed, making the planet's core less defined and fuzzy like it is now. “Before [the] impact, you have...
(Excerpt) Read more at: www.theregister.co.uk
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