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Class 11 Physics (India)

Course: Class 11 Physics (India)>Unit 13

Lesson 3: Application of elastic properties (Bonus)

How tall can mountains get?

Is there is a limit to the height of a mountain? Let's see what the height of a mountain has got to do with elastic properties of a material. Created by Mahesh Shenoy.

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• Won't it be h less than or equal to 10km, as the rocks will retain elasticity at 3*10^8 Pa [elastic limit]?
• As mentioned, all values are rough assumptions. Not that we can physically do any of the stuff mentioned in the video (Increase a mountains ht.) but if we were to do so, as a safety measure we wouldn't consider making a mountain of height = 10km. Now whatever I've said might not be the reason why sir didn't equate height to 10 kilometers, maybe he might have forgotten or wtv but if you were looking forward to a technical explanation. That is probably the only explanation you have.
• because gravity is lower on mars
• Yup!
acceleration due to gravity on mars is roughly 1/3 of earth's (3.72m/s^2 to be exact)!
so, substituting in our eq.
h < 3*10^8/(ρ*g/3)
h < 10 km * 3
h < 30 km
and, Mt. Olympus is shorter!
further, the density and type of rocks found on mars are quite different than that of earth, so take this with a pinch of salt.
Hope this helps,
if wrong lemme know,
onward!