NASA warns of possible asteroid strike on Valentine’s Day — RT World News
A 50-meter space rock could hit Earth in 2046, but the odds are “very low”, the US space agency has said.
NASA is tracking a newly discovered asteroid the size of an Olympic swimming pool that could crash into Earth on Valentine’s Day 23 years from now, the space agency revealed this week. However, astronomers estimate that the risk of collision is minimal.
In a tweet on Wednesday, NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office said the asteroid – dubbed 2023 DW – “has a very low chance of impacting Earth”, adding that orbit analysts would continue to monitor the object and update their predictions as more information becomes available.
Data from the space agency suggests that the 49-meter space rock will come closest to Earth at 1.8 million kilometers, which would occur on February 14, 2046.
NASA put the chance of impact at 1 in 560, while the European Space Agency put it at 1 in 625. Both space agencies rated the asteroid 1 out of 10 on the impact risk scale. of Turin, a tool to measure the threat of potential impact events. .
Level one means that “the risk of collision is extremely unlikely without cause for public attention or concern”, according to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Referring to level one, it also indicates that “new telescopic observations will most likely lead to a reassignment to level 0”, which means that the probability of a collision with the space object is effectively zero.
However, even a level one threat is extremely unusual as all other listed asteroids have zero ratings.
NASA’s discovery comes after successfully altering the trajectory of an asteroid in October last year by intentionally crashing a rocket into it. The mission, dubbed the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART), has been hailed as a major breakthrough for planetary defense.
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