Six asteroids on their way to Earth, the probability of one of them is 10%.
Space experts this week warned of a space rock the size of an Olympic swimming pool. could hit Earth on Valentine’s Day 2046 – but how many more are there?
The good news is that it’s not time to head into the doomsday bunkers yet – the chances of a Valentine’s Day asteroid (2023 DW) are rapidly declining.
But there are a few asteroids that could hit Earth in the coming centuries, although space agencies around the world are keeping a close eye on them.
Scroll down to read about the six asteroids:
NASA also conducted a successful experiment in which a small spacecraft deflected a space rock by crashing into it.
The good news is that very large asteroids – like the ones that killed the dinosaurs – are under surveillance, and they are all considered “highly unlikely” to hit Earth.
NASA reports that more than 100 tons of rock particles fall to Earth every day, and football field-sized asteroids only fall every 2,000 years.
Civilization-destroying asteroids only collide with our planet once every few million years, and any rocks of this size are closely monitored.
Thus, the rocks most likely to hit Earth are more likely to burn up in the atmosphere or cause minimal damage, rather than being the civilization-destroying blow beloved in Hollywood movies.
However, small rocks can have an impact: The Chelyabinsk meteorite that exploded over Russia in 2013 and killed 1,500 people was only 59 feet in diameter.
During the accident in Chelyabinsk in 2013, 1,500 people were injured and 7,300 buildings were damaged as a result of severe overpressure caused by a shock wave on the Earth’s surface.
NASA and other space agencies are keeping a close eye on “potentially hazardous asteroids.”
The probability of an asteroid impacting the Earth is estimated on three scales: on the Turin scale, a scale of one to ten from 0 (not hitting the Earth) to 10 (hitting the Earth and causing a catastrophe).
Currently, no asteroid has a rating higher than one.
The corresponding Palermo scale is used by scientists to rank risks over a longer period, and NASA’s Sentry Risk table ranks asteroids by their risk of impact with the Earth.
Initial sightings of asteroids were generally brief, and as more data became available to scientists, the likelihood of a collision dropped.
Title: 2023 FE
Chances of impact? One of 1584
Potential Impact Date: February 14, 2046
This week, experts warned that this 160-foot asteroid could cause an explosion similar to the Tunguska event, which flattened more than 80 million trees.
But the chances of a rock hitting Earth on Valentine’s Day 2046 have dropped significantly since then.
Richard Moissle, head of ESA’s planetary defense division, reduced the chance of an asteroid hitting Earth from one in 784 to one in 1,584.
Moissy said: “Now it will decrease with each observation until it reaches zero at the latest in a couple of days.” Nobody should worry about this guy.
Chances of impact? One of 2700
Potential Impact Date: September 24, 2182
Bennu may collide with Earth in the second half of the next century (NASA)
Bennu is slightly wider than the height of New York’s Empire State Building and was visited in 2020 by NASA’s Osiris-Rex spacecraft, which collected material from its surface.
Bennu is over 4.5 billion years old, and scientists estimate that it has a one in 2,700 chance of hitting Earth at the end of the 22nd century.
Professor Dante Lauretta of the University of Arizona previously said that a strike on Benn would release “three times more energy than all the nuclear weapons detonated in history.”
“The impact will release energy equivalent to 1,450 megatons of TNT.”
“By comparison, the fission bombs used during World War II had a yield of about 20 kilotons of TNT each, and the most powerful nuclear bomb ever detonated, the Russian Tsar Bomba, had a yield of 50 megatons.”
Chances of impact? One of 10
Potential Impact Date: September 5, 2095
Experts suggest that instead of hitting the ground, this asteroid is likely to explode in a fireball (file image).
This asteroid is classified as the most likely to hit our planet in the next century, with a one in ten chance of hitting Earth, but don’t panic, it’s pretty small.
The space rock is due to arrive sometime before the end of this century, but is thought to be about 21 feet in diameter.
So, instead of hitting the surface, it will probably explode in a huge air burst in the upper atmosphere, and the only thing that will reach the ground is pebbles.
Title: THIS 1950
Chances of impact? One of 34,000
Potential Impact Date: March 16, 2880
This asteroid, half a mile wide, has a fairly high risk of impact with Earth, with a probability of one in 34,000.
It has also been given a high risk rating due to its size, but it will not appear until eight centuries later.
First seen in 1950, hence the name, it has been observed since the turn of the millennium.
In 2032, it will make a close pass at a distance of 6,959,357 miles, allowing further observations.
NASA indicates that we have 35 generations to deal with this problem.
NASA says: “If it is ultimately decided that 1950 DA must be rejected, hundreds of years of warnings could allow for something as simple as sprinkling chalk or charcoal on the surface of an asteroid, or perhaps white glass marbles, or sending a solar sailing spacecraft. which eventually destroys its reflective sail around the asteroid.
“These things will change the reflectivity of the asteroids and allow sunlight to push the asteroid out of the way.”
Chances of impact? N/A
Potential Impact Date: 2562
Huge asteroid sparked fear in 2004 but won’t be back for a long time (NASA)
Tutatis won’t return to Earth for some time (NASA)
This huge asteroid is three miles wide, and in 2004 it almost poked the Earth, traveling four times the distance from the Earth to the Moon, setting off a wave of unsubstantiated doom predictions.
NASA predicts it won’t make another such close pass until 2562.
NASA states: “Thanks to an extensive array of optical and radar observations, Toutatis’ orbit is one of the most accurately determined of any asteroid, and there is no chance of this object colliding with Earth during this encounter – or any other encounter for at least five centuries.”