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May 1 2013

How Mars and Jupiter Formed from Space Rock Crashes

The violent space rock collisions that gave birth to Mars appear to be surprisingly different from those thought to form the rocky core of Jupiter, scientists say.

The difference comes from variations in the disc of dust, ice and other particles that swirled around the sun in the early years of the solar system.

Researchers said there was a "gradient" in the size of planetesimals an early stage of planet formation that orbited the young sun. Planets that were further away from the sun were more likely to grow larger than worlds closer in, they added.

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