Cross section

Let's consider a body (that we will call the impactor) that travels in a certain direction. This body is headed to impact with a second body (called target body). The bigger the target is, the more it will have a chance of being hit by the impactor.
This simple concept can be formalized introducing the geometrical cross section,
which is the area occupied by the target body projected on a plane orthogonal to the direction of the motion. Therefore, this cross section is proportional to the chances of a hit. If the target body has a non geometrical shape, its cross section will be the area projected on the plane orthogonal to the direction of the motion.

 



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