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What Would Really Happen If Thor’s Hammer Shattered?

The thing that best defines mighty Thor is his equally mighty hammer Mjölnir, even more so than his hair (which I’m totally not jealous of). So when the hammer is shattered by the goddess of death Hela in the new film Thor: Ragnarok, it’s going to be devastating for the big guy. But it would be pretty devastating for us, too. If Thor’s hammer actually shattered, something really, really bad would happen.

In my latest Because Science, I’m taking a look at the physical consequences of breaking an object like Mjölnir. Now, I’ve always held that Thor’s hammer can make itself heavy at will, through the emission of so-called graviton particles. But since Thor himself says in Ragnarok that the hammer is special (and especially heavy) because it is made of metal “from the heart of a dying star,” we’ll take him at his word for this episode. What would happen if a hammer made from white dwarf or neutron star—dying star—material broke apart?

In short, catastrophe.

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