Thursday , June 24 2021

NASA, Asteroid | NASA breathed a sigh of relief:

NASA has been concerned about a possible collision with this massive asteroid since 2004.

The US space agency NASA calculated that the asteroid 9942 Apophis would cross the earth “only” at a distance of 32,000 kilometers. The event will take place on Friday, April 13, 2029. The passage will be visible to the naked eye without having to resort to telescopes or binoculars.

The asteroid has a diameter of 340 meters and can cause enormous damage if it collides with the earth.

This animated video for NASA shows the assumed orbit of the asteroid Apophis as it crosses Earth on April 13, 2029.

In the past, there was tension and anxiety associated with this particular asteroid. NASA scientists were not entirely sure whether a collision between Earth and asteroid could be completely ignored in the near future.

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Potentially dangerous asteroid

Since 2004, Apophis has been considered the most dangerous asteroid that could potentially hit Earth.

At first, NASA wasn’t sure whether the asteroid would potentially collide with Earth as early as 2029. Then this possibility has been shifted to 2036 and now to 2068.

Now NASA can bring good news, at least for everyone alive today.

Davide Farnocchia of NASA Center Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) says the probability of a collision in 2068 is now out of reach and our calculations show no risk of collision over the next 100 years.

As the name suggests, CNEOS tracks objects in space that pass a relatively close distance to Earth.

– When I started working with asteroids after my work, Apophis was the best candidate among dangerous asteroids, says Farnocchia.


* Asteroids are small, solid and irregularly shaped celestial bodies made up of iron and rocks orbiting the Sun. Most of the asteroids in the solar system are found in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Since 1993, hundreds of asteroids have been discovered in the Kuiper Belt in orbit of Neptune and beyond.

* It is estimated that there are about 100,000 asteroids with a diameter greater than one kilometer. The total mass of all asteroids in the solar system is less than the mass of the Moon.

Asteroids orbit the Sun in the same direction as the planets. Asteroids passing through Earth’s orbit are called Apollo asteroids. It is estimated that there are about 1200 asteroids with a diameter greater than one kilometer close to Earth’s orbit. These represent a non-insignificant risk of collision to Earth.

* In 2017, a non-solar asteroid called interstellar asteroid was observed for the first time. The interstellar asteroid ‘Oumuamua’ (1I / 2017) has an orbit indicating that it is not gravitationally bound to the Sun and only travels through the universe.

Source: Store Norske Leksikon

Removed from the risk list

According to Sky News, a collision between Earth and Apophis is believed to trigger an explosion equivalent to 508 megatons, 28,000 times more powerful than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima during World War II.

– With the support of recent optical observations and more radar observations, the uncertainty in Apophis’s orbit has dropped from hundreds of kilometers to just a few kilometers in terms of its location in 2029. Farnocchia says we can remove Apophis from this list of risks for its future actions.

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The list that Farnocchia mentions is the Sentinel Impact Risk Chart. This is NASA’s overview of objects in space that are potentially at risk of colliding with Earth. At the time of writing, there are 21 objects in this list.

After the astronomers calculate the risk of objects colliding, the object is moved to the Removed objects list. Apophis was transferred to this list on Friday, March 26th.

Some known asteroid hits

65 million years ago: Asteroid or comet with approximate diameter. He built the 10 km Chicxulub Crater (Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico). Probably 75 percent of the species on Earth, including dinosaurs, are extinct.

50,000 years ago: Asteroid with approximate diameter. It fell 50 m, forming the Barringer Crater in Arizona in the USA at a depth of 1.2 km and 175 m.

35 million years ago: Asteroid or comet with approximate diameter. 5 km formed an 80 km crater in Chesapeake Bay on the east coast of the United States. The impact changed many river routes and led to changes in groundwater bodies.

251 million years ago: Asteroid or comet with approximate diameter. 10 km built Bedout Crater on Australia’s northwest coast. It probably destroyed 90 percent of marine life and 80 percent of terrestrial life. Possibly triggered severe earthquakes and caused global climate change

110 years ago (30 June 1908): Asteroids or comets with a diameter of about 60 m approximately exploded. Let the forest flatten 8 km above Tunguska in Siberia and over an area of ​​2000 km2. The explosive impact is estimated to be up to 10 megatons, like 500 Hiroshima bombs.

Source: Store Norske Leksikon

“Profit” to the world in 2029

According to NASA, Apophis will clear the earth with a span of 32,000 kilometers in just over eight years. It may sound very far, but the asteroid will be closer to Earth than many geosynchronous satellites – that is, satellites that orbit simultaneously around Earth with an orbital period of about one day.

Also read: This black hole astounds scientists – gushing through space

Using a powerful telescope and radar, NASA was able to summarize a relatively clear image of the asteroid at 17 million kilometers from Earth – that’s 44 times the distance between Earth and the Moon.

“If we had binoculars as powerful as this radar, we could have been sitting in Los Angeles and reading the menu at a restaurant in New York,” NASA scientist Marina Brozovic said in a statement.


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