Crater on aluminium sheet from impact research

Crater on aluminium sheet from impact research

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Credit: GEOFF TOMPKINSON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Impact crater. Damage to an aluminium sheet caused during research into high-velocity small particle damage to satellites. A nylon plug weighing 79 milligrams was fired at a double aluminium sheet at 4.89 kilometres per second in a vacuum. The plug has passed straight through a double thickness of aluminium sheet. From this research, it was found that two separated sheets of aluminium provide better protection than one of double thickness. Such data allows more accurate interpretation of actual space impact damage. Protecting satellites from impact damage is very important, as dust and "space junk" impacts could potentially destroy an unprotected satellite.

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Keywords: aluminium, aluminium sheet, crater, debris, impact, impact crater, impact research, nylon plug, protection, research, satellite, satellite protection, space junk

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