Explore the danger meteoroids pose to spacecraft in this video excerpt from NOVA scienceNOW: "Can We Make It to Mars?" Host Neil deGrasse Tyson visits a NASA testing facility to learn about the damage that can be caused by a high-speed collision between space debris and spacecraft. A demonstration shows how gaping holes can result from the impact of a small projectile, traveling about 16,000 mph, into an unshielded spacecraft. Meteoroids have damaged many spacecraft in the past; so if astronauts are to survive a mission to Mars, they need to be protected from such impacts. An innovative lightweight shielding may be able to protect against hazardous meteoroids.
This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions.
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