There’s a small chance an asteroid will smack into Earth in 2135. NASA is working on a plan.

Mar 20, 2018

By Cleve R. Wootson Jr.

Here’s a tip for the planners among us: If you have dinner reservations or theater tickets for Sept. 22, 2135 (it’s a Thursday), now might be a good time to scuttle them.

Sometime the day before, scientists say, there is a small chance that an asteroid the size of the Empire State Building will smack into Earth, destroying a lot of living things on the planet.

But don’t worry. NASA has got you covered.

Forward-thinking astrophysicists and people who specialize in blowing things up with nuclear weapons have come up with a plan, which they swear was not drawn up by Bruce Willis.

If the asteroid — it is named Bennu — decides to go rogue, they could send a nearly nine-ton “bulk impactor” to push it out of Earth’s orbit. Or, more likely, they would gently nudge it out of its apocalyptic path using a nuclear device.

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3 comments on “There’s a small chance an asteroid will smack into Earth in 2135. NASA is working on a plan.

  • @OP – Or, more likely, they would gently nudge it out of its apocalyptic path using a nuclear device.

    I have made the point on several related discussions, that gently deflecting asteroids by pushing them on to a new trajectory, is a far safer option than risking blowing them into hundreds of unmanageable pieces which are still heading for Earth! !

    https://www.richarddawkins.net/2018/03/russian-scientists-tested-their-asteroid-nuking-plan-with-powerful-lasers/#li-comment-231127



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  • @OP link – Soon we will know more.
    NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has been en route to Bennu for two years,
    according to the agency.
    It contains instruments that “will map Bennu and establish the composition of the asteroid, including the distribution of the elements, minerals and organic materials.”

    It will also scrape off a 2.1-ounce sample and bring it back to Earth, NASA says.

    It makes sense to do the homework well in advance to decide what sort of structure is being dealt with before planning actions!

    Asteroids come in many forms and levels of structural cohesion.



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  • There’s a small chance an asteroid will smack into Earth in 2135.
    NASA is working on a plan.

    Or – More accurately: –

    There’s a VERY small chance THIS asteroid will smack into Earth in 2135.

    There are however many others which are not yet mapped!



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