Physics and Star Wars - Specific Phenomena - Asteroid Field in Episode V

Asteroid Field in Episode V

In Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, after the Battle of Hoth, the Millennium Falcon is pursued by imperial ships through a dense asteroid field. The chunks of rock in the field are moving at rapid speeds, constantly colliding, and densely packed. Ordinarily, an asteroid field or belt is unlikely to be so densely packed with large objects, because collisions reduce large objects to rubble. About the only way for an asteroid belt to maintain itself would be to "balance destructive high-speed collisions with constructive soft collisions", but it is unclear whether this is happening in the film.

In contrast to Star Wars, the ship featured in 2001: A Space Odyssey, Discovery One's course took it directly through the asteroid belt in the novel, without real fear of collision on the part of the mission organizers. However, our asteroid belt is far less dense and several real spacecraft have passed through it without harm.

On the other hand, the so-called Trojan asteroid fields, named after the asteroids found in Jupiter-Sun Lagrange points, are known to be packed much more densely. Our own Solar system contains two such fields, the Greek Trojans and the Trojan Trojans, and two more (Neptune's trojans) are discovered recently but little is known about them currently.

Read more about this topic:  Physics And Star Wars, Specific Phenomena

Famous quotes containing the word field:

    When white men were willing to put their own offspring in the kitchen and corn field and allowed them to be sold into bondage as slaves and degraded them as another man’s slave, the retribution of wrath was hanging over this country and the South paid penance in four years of bloody war.
    Rebecca Latimer Felton (1835–1930)