Newly found asteroid the dimensions of a swimming pool has a 1-in-600 likelihood of colliding with Earth, NASA says
A newly found asteroid might make a perilously shut method to Earth about 20 years from now, with a roughly 1-in-600 likelihood that the area rock will collide immediately with our planet, officers with NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office tweeted (opens in new tab).
Whereas that is a higher-than-average danger degree for near-Earth asteroids, it is nonetheless a “very small likelihood” of affect, NASA wrote — and that danger degree is predicted to say no as clearer observations of the asteroid grow to be out there.
First detected on Feb. 27, the asteroid dubbed 2023 DW is estimated to measure about 165 ft (50 meters) in diameter, or roughly the size of an Olympic-size swimming pool. The asteroid is predicted to make a really shut method to Earth on Feb. 14, 2046; as of March 8, the European Space Agency’s Near-Earth Object Coordination Centre (opens in new tab) predicts a 1-in-625 likelihood of a direct affect, though these odds are being recalculated every day.
We have been monitoring a brand new asteroid named 2023 DW that has a really small likelihood of impacting Earth in 2046. Typically when new objects are first found, it takes a number of weeks of information to cut back the uncertainties and adequately predict their orbits years into the long run. (1/2) pic.twitter.com/SaLC0AUSdPMarch 7, 2023
“Typically when new objects are first found, it takes a number of weeks of information to cut back the uncertainties and adequately predict their orbits years into the long run,” NASA tweeted. “Orbit analysts will proceed to observe asteroid 2023 DW and replace predictions as extra knowledge is available in.”
A direct affect from such a rock would not be cataclysmic just like the roughly 7.5-mile-wide (12 kilometers) dinosaur-killing asteroid that crashed to Earth 66 million years in the past. Nonetheless, 2023 DW may nonetheless trigger extreme harm if it have been to land near a significant metropolis or closely populated space. A meteor lower than half the dimensions of 2023 DW exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia, in 2013, producing a shock wave that broken hundreds of buildings and injured roughly 1,500 folks.
Whereas an affect with 2023 DW is extraordinarily unlikely, scientists are quickly growing strategies to guard Earth from probably hazardous asteroids like this one. Final week, NASA scientists printed 4 research confirming that the company’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission had efficiently altered the trajectory of a small asteroid after slamming a spacecraft immediately into it. Observe-up missions are at the moment within the works to additional hone the effectiveness of this planetary protection approach.