NASA / JPL-CALTECH / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / JPL-CALTECH / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Celestial impact. Computer artwork showing a celestial body about the size of our moon slamming at great speed into a body the size of Mercury (left). This giant impact results in the planet being stripped of its outer layers, with the core and most of the surface of the smaller body being absorbed by the larger one. This merging of rocky bodies is how planets such as Earth are thought to form.
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