JOE TUCCIARONE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOE TUCCIARONE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Formation of a protoplanet. Animation of small rocky bodies (planetesimals) accreting with a protoplanet in a young planetary system. As the planetesimals impact the planet, they turn the sirface molten and trigger volcanic eruptions. This is the process by which the Earth and the other inner Solar System planets formed around 4.6 billion years ago.
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