(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); 1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

A 4.50E10 kg asteroid is heading directly toward the center of the earth at a steady 16.0 km/s. To save the planet, astronauts strap a giant rocket to the asteroid perpendicular to its direction of travel. The rocket generates 5.0E9 N of thrust. The rocket is fired when the asteroid is 5.70E6 km away from earth. You can ignore the rotational motion of the earth and asteroid around the sun.

The radius of the earth is 6400 {\rm km}. By what minimum angle must the asteroid be deflected to just miss the earth?

2. Relevant equations

Trigonometric functions (more specifically, tan(x))

3. The attempt at a solution

Made a picture (pictorial representation?) of a right triangle, the adjacent angle being 5.7E6km, and the opposite being 6400km (the radius of the earth). Did tan(6400/5.7E6) and tan(128000/5.7E6), neither of these produced the correct answer. I'm guessing the problem would be easier if we were given the radius of the asteroid, which we aren't.

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# Homework Help: Asteroid and Earth Angle

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