73 votes
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Why is the asteroid belt shaped like a triangle?

It's not. The image doesn't show the main asteroid belt. It shows the Jovian Trojans (in green) , and the Hilda Asteroids (in red). The Hildas are a dynamical group of a few thousand known asteroids ...
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  • 3,369
60 votes
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Why isn't the asteroid belt affected by Jupiter's gravitational field?

The asteroid belt is affected by Jupiter's gravity. There are stable orbits inside of Jupiter's orbit. Jupiter's Hill Sphere has a radius of 53 million km. If you are more than 53 million km from ...
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  • 91.5k
19 votes

How big would the asteroid belt planet be?

The mass of the asteroid main belt is estimated at 4% the mass of our moon according to Wikipedia so any object formed from the aggregation of that mass would not be a planet. It would be the size of ...
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  • 4,969
17 votes
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How big would the asteroid belt planet be?

The largest main belt asteroid is 1 Ceres, which alone contains almost a third of the total mass of the whole main asteroid belt. Ceres is large enough to be in hydrostatic equilibrium, i.e. its own ...
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15 votes
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Can we estimate the orbital period of the planet Phaeton (destroyed planet between Mars and Jupiter)?

Whether we know or believe Phaeton exited, we can estimate its orbital period from some reasonable assumptions using Kepler's third law. Kepler's third law states: The ratio of the square of an ...
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11 votes
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Temporary family member 2020-CD3

There is no chance of a collision in the short term. 2020 CD3 is in a rather chaotic orbit of the Earth that extends well beyond the moon and doesn't come very close to Earth Each orbit is different, ...
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11 votes
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Can the asteroid belt be seen from Jupiter?

No. The asteroid Belt is on average about 2.6 AU from the Sun. Earth is 1 AU from Sun, 1.6 AU from the asteroid belt. Jupiter is 5.2 from Sun, 2.6 AU from the asteroid belt. I.e. much further away. ...
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  • 10.9k
8 votes
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Planetary orbital resonances

This is actually a very subtle question, much more so than the answers to the similar questions provided in the comments give it credit for. When I was in graduate school at Ohio State I routinely ...
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7 votes
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Is Ceres in the inner solar system or outer solar system?

Inner. The entire asteroid belt is in the Inner Solar System (now). The definition of "Inner" vs. "Outer" is non-arbitrary, based on the current "frost line", approx. 5 a.u. radius. https://en....
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  • 296
5 votes

Can we estimate the orbital period of the planet Phaeton (destroyed planet between Mars and Jupiter)?

The Titus-Bode law predicts1 a semimajor axis of 2.7 AU which gives it a period of 4.4 years. $$a = \frac{4 + 3 \times 2^n}{10} \ \ \text{AU}$$ where $$n = -\infty, 0, 1, 2, 3...$$ Earth with $n=1$ is ...
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5 votes

What is the significance of the asteroid belt?

The only reason I've seen from my research is "because it's there", but I'd like to know a more scientific reason. "Because it's there" is a scientific reason. Couple that with the fact that we know ...
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5 votes
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Which is the farthest distance a particular distant known- identified object from the asteroid belt can get from the sun?

tl;dr: The key part the question is the phrase ...from the asteroid belt... There are lots of asteroids and only some of them are considered to be in "the asteroid belt" or to be main-belt ...
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  • 31.8k
4 votes

Connection between Earth, Moon, Theia, and asteroid belt?

Let's start answering your question in reverse. Ceres could not be "the missing Theia", because of its shape. If an object hit the Earth at an angle (as is currently thought), it would be pretty ...
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4 votes

How long does it take for an asteroid to get to Earth?

The full orbital period of an object orbiting the sun is $$T=2\pi \sqrt{\frac{a^3}{GM_\odot}},$$ where $a$ is the semi-major axis of the orbit and $M_\odot$ the mass of the sun. If the asteroid has ...
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3 votes
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Are there celestial bodies that are about as far away as the Sun?

Asteroids with an orbit of between 1.8 and 2 Au (So their closest approach is is about the same distance to the Earth as the Earth is to the sun) are called Hungaria group asteroids, named after 434 ...
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3 votes

How much rock has Jupiter "swallowed"?

Jupiter is a gas giant, with a mass approximately 317.8 times that of Earth, and its atmosphere has a composition that's typical of gas in space: almost 75% hydrogen and almost 24% helium, (barely ...
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3 votes
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Why haven't we had an "asteroid attack" until now?

That asteroid diagram is a bit misleading. It's showing the distribution of the asteroids, but it greatly exaggerates the sizes of all the bodies relative to the sizes of the orbits. Even the dot ...
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3 votes

How has the average distance between asteroids in the asteroid belt changed over time?

Early in the history of the solar system, before all of the surviving objects had stable orbits, there were a number of bodies with orbits tat turned out to be unstable. Many of those bodies were ...
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3 votes
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How has the average distance between asteroids in the asteroid belt changed over time?

The asteroids formed roughly where they are now, from matter in the sun's protoplanetary disc that didn't form into a larger body (at least partly under the influence of Jupiter's gravity) Since early ...
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3 votes

What if there was an asteroid belt with the mass of a planet?

To have an asteroid belt with the mass of a planet, asteroids would have to be much more massive or be much more closer apart from each other. Either of these will likely cause the asteroid belt to ...
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2 votes

Is Ceres a terrestrial-type (dwarf) planet?

I'm inclined to say no (and footnote, I realize Wikipedia isn't a good source for scientific proof as it's not always right, but I'm using it more to demonstrate a point than than use it as an ...
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  • 22.9k
2 votes

What size objects can be created from collision of two asteroids?

The speed of the collision changes everything. The formation of comets and asteroids is likely to take place the circumstellar disk of matter, perhaps even before the fist plant's formed. As the ...
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  • 22.9k
2 votes

What size objects can be created from collision of two asteroids?

Since planets are forming from asteroid collisions, I would say those collisions won't necessarily create small objects. Imagine throwing a snowball against a window. If you throw it lightly, some ...
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2 votes

How big would the asteroid belt planet be?

Ceres constitutes about 1/3 of the mass of the asteroid belt. Assuming the same density, the whole asteroid belt combined into one planet would have 3 times greater volume than Ceres and $\sqrt[3]{3}=...
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  • 1,199
1 vote

What resources do C-Type(Carbonaceous) Asteroids contain?

Carbonaceous asteroids contain carbon in the form of chondrites (small marble-sized nodules),tiny crystals and other sorts of carbon dust. This is mixed in a sort of conglomerate with dust and nodules ...
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1 vote

How big would the asteroid belt planet be?

The current mass of the asteroid belt is just a few percent that of the Moon. However, if Jupiter did not exist, it might be that there would have been a full-sized terrestrial planet where the ...
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  • 118k
1 vote

How big would the asteroid belt planet be?

Wikipedia states that 99.9% of the mass originally in the asteroid belt was lost in the first 100 million years of the solar system - I am assuming after the protosun initiated fusion. If so, that ...
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  • 11
1 vote

Connection between Earth, Moon, Theia, and asteroid belt?

I hope it's OK to answer an old question. First, let me say that your proposal is creative. You've explained the possible creation of the asteroid belt (by collision - not impossible), and you've ...
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