Rita Skeeter goes boom

One of the characters in the Harry Potter stories has the ability to turn herself into a beetle. So, let's pretend that all the other laws of physics hold, in particular conservation of momentum, and ask what would happen during such a transformation.

Consider a 70 kg70~\mbox{kg} woman walking to the right at a speed of 1 m/s1~\mbox{m/s} who all of a sudden transforms into a 10 g10~\mbox{g} beetle. How many times faster than the speed of sound is she going after her transformation?

Details and assumptions

  • The speed of sound is approximately 340 m/s340~\mbox{m/s} at sea level.
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