What physical mechanisms are involved in heating planetary bodies?

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Summary:

Many asteroids and planets have undergone enough heating so that they were at some point completely or partially melted. What physical mechanisms are in play here?
Many asteroids and planets have undergone enough heating so that they were at some point completely or partially melted. What physical mechanisms are in play here? I'm assuming a solar system such as our own.

Thanks!
 

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  • #2
phinds
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What research have you done on this so far? What have you found out? There are a couple of obvious ones that should jump right out at you.

Ah ... I see you are new. Welcome to the forum. This is not exactly a Q&A forum. We expect people to have done some research on their own before coming here to get confusing/unclear things cleared up.
 
  • #3
mathman
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Sun heat.
 
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There are a few primary ones:

The sun: a decent amount of heat comes from the sun, it is the primary reason that there is liquid water on earth.

Accretion: When the planets and bodies were created, it was a time of incredible violence. Objects would hit each other at thousands of miles an hour, which produced a lot of heat.

Radioactivity: Big objects like the earth have enough radioactive materials in them that there decay can contribute to the internal temperature of them.
 
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phinds
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Well, redgiant, apparently I was wrong and we ARE a pure Q&A forum.
 
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  • #6
davenn
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Sun heat.
There are a few primary ones:

Guys !! please!
when you see that some one does a response like @phinds did in post #2

DONT hand the OP all the info on a silver platter .... let the OP think about it and see what
they can come up with, then help them from there
That is the PF way !


Dave
 
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