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Chicken Little “The sky is falling!”

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Asteroid DA14

Asteroid DA14

chickenlittle

After the huge meteorite explosion over Russia reports are coming in from around the globe:

Japan: Huge Fireball on Valentines Day

Cuba: Suspected Meteor Explosion in Cuba

USA: Fireball Lights up Northern California Skies

All this combined with the passing DA14 asteroid…

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STOP throwing rocks at us!

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Asteroid will come closer than satellites – but it’s not the end of the world

Lump of rock 50 metres long will soar through sky at about 8 miles a second

Asteroid DA14

Asteroid DA14 image inserted in place of video clip

 

Anyone happening to glance towards the heavens in a week’s time and glimpses a 50-metre-long lump of rock hurtling ominously through the skies need not panic.

Although it will pass closer to us than any asteroid has for the past 15 years – closer even than the TV satellites that girdle the planet – Nasa insists that 2012 DA14 will miss Earth by a good 17,100 miles (27,520km).

“No Earth impact is possible,” said Donald Yeomans, an astronomer with the US space agency.

He also pointed out that the planet was bombarded by about 100 tonnes of space material every day.

“Basketball-sized objects come in daily,” he said. “Volkswagen-sized objects come in every couple of weeks. As you get to larger and larger sizes the number of objects out there is less and less, so the frequency of hits goes down.”

Yeomans added that asteroids as big as DA14, which is abou t 46 metres wide, are estimated to strike Earth about every 1,200 years.

“For objects of this size, this is the closest predicted encounter that we’re aware of,” he said.

Credit: Guardian graphics

DA14, which was discovered last year by a group of amateur astronomers in Spain, will soar through the sky at about 8 miles a second. At that speed, an object of similar size on a collision course with Earth would strike with the force of about 2.4m tonnes of dynamite.

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Apparently, there’s nothing to worry about just yet, but I read somewhere that there’s a high probability of a direct hit in 2036…

I won’t be here!

 

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