Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Apophis Strikes Earth: Odds still 1 in 45,000

  1. Apr 17, 2008 #1
    This is sort of in response to an article Ivan posted in the locked Apophis thread:
    http://www.physorg.com/news127499715.html [Broken]

    The above is the url from Ivan.

    Below are urls to the contrary


    http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news158.html [Broken]

    This is an example of very, very, shoddy journalism.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 17, 2008 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Even if the asteroid did pass through the zone occupied by geostationary satellites, the density isn't really all that high. I can't imagine that it would have that much of a chance of hitting one.
  4. Apr 17, 2008 #3
    Indeed! I'd say the odds are less than 1 in 45,000 that that would happen.
  5. Apr 18, 2008 #4
    This must be answered by using mathematics, not aguing.
  6. Apr 18, 2008 #5


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    I keep hearing stuff about how crowded that orbit is. Is it really that vacant? What is the avarage distance between those satelites?
  7. Apr 18, 2008 #6

    D H

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    First, Apophis won't even come close to the projection of Earth's equator out to geostationary altitude. Second, even if it did, there is a big difference between Apophis and satellites at geostationary altitude that are not quite geosynchronous anymore. Apophis will come barreling through at hyperbolic speed, and do so once. Those not-quite-geosynchronous satellites have a chance to hit each and every geosynchronous satellite, and have that chance many times over.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook