Mjolnir up in here

First off, yes, I realize it’s “Mjölnir”, but WordPress didn’t let me put the fancy ö in the subject of this, so deal with it for now. Second, we’re talking about the fictional Marvel comics portrayal of Mjölnir and Thor (currently played by the dreamy Chris Hemsworth. I will however be switching between the multiple origin points that comic book nerds battle over, however 🙂

See this? It’s a poster for the upcoming sequel to Thor.. and that squarish thing he’s holding, that’s Mjölnir.

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From what I could research, the hammer’s dimensions range from 6″ in length to a full foot, but most sources I’ve found state it’s 8.5″. The perfect length, amirite ladies? ANYWAYS… it’s square at an average sourced measurement of 4″, so it’s 8.5x4x4 inches in total, or 136 cubic inches. Now that we have the pesky base line out of the way, time to tackle the myths.

Mjölnir was formed from the core of a dying star / neutron star.

Mjölnir was formed in the core of a dying star / neutron star.

Two very similar phrases, but two very different meanings. Commonly accepted was the latter, where it was formed IN the core of a dying star. Forming something IN the core would give it access to millions of degrees of heat, no matter which table of measurement you want to follow, it’s pretty much all the same.. REALLY F’ING HOT! Anything reaching that level of heat has so much energy that common elements couldn’t retain the form of a solid. Carbon currently holds the gold medal for the highest melting point of a measly 3500 degrees. It couldn’t even come CLOSE to the core, but Marvel and that silly Stan Lee had that covered. It was made of Uru, an ancient metal that just so happened to have such a high melting point that it required the core of a dying star just to become malleable. Those silly dwarves or whomever actually crafted it would also have to have been coated in the stuff because assuming that once it leaves it’s heat source it will then become immalleable, which means it could no longer be inscribed as pictured above, but I’m not a Asgardian blacksmith, so I don’t know the properties of cooling magical metals and what not.

Since Uru doesn’t actually exist, then we can only assume that it’s properties are magical in nature, therefor it’s magical in how it’s lifted, no matter the weight, mass or other measurement.

But what about if it was made FROM the core of a dying star, aka. Neutronium. Now, Neutronium is dense.. REALLY dense. It’s so dense that an average neutron star has a diameter of only 12km, yet it has the same mass as an average of 2.5 solar masses (1 solar mass = one of our Suns). That’s pretty heavy, no matter where you measure it from. Now, we know that the hammer itself is 136 cubic inches, what we don’t know is that Neutronium is roughly 4.8 x 1017 kg/m3. That’s a big number but roughly translated, a teaspoon of this stuff is roughly 10 billion tons. There’s a few thousand teaspoons in the total volume of Thor’s hammer. Crunching some of the numbers gives me 3.5 x 1017 kg, or 35 000 000 000 000 000 000 kilograms of weight, or about 0.00005% of the total mass of Earth.

The amount of energy to move such a weight would be so astronomically high, that it is very likely to destroy Earth and a good chunk of the solar system (if not all of it) just by moving it slightly (like, an inch or so).

Jeff Wilton

Jeff is the founder and owner of Everyday Science Stuff. ESS is a one man operation, with the core belief that all education should be served without crippling debt tuition, without revenue generating ads and without any restrictions of any kind such as paywalls, forced login and account creations, geographical restrictions, and so on.

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