Chances of a catastrophic collision

  • Thread starter kleinma
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{reposted CNN article edited down by Phobos...copyright laws, y'know}

LONDON, England (Reuters) -- A giant asteroid is heading for Earth and could hit in 2014...But for those fearing Armageddon, don't be alarmed -- the chances of a catastrophic collision are just one in 909,000. Asteroid "2003 QQ47" will be closely monitored over the next two months. Its potential strike date is March 21, 2014, but astronomers say that any risk of impact is likely to decrease as further data is gathered. On impact, it could have the effect of 20 million Hiroshima atomic bombs, ....
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seems like the odds are a lot better than some other near earth asteroids..

From CNN
 
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  • #2
Phobos
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Good job, Lincoln Near Earth Asteroid Research Program!

FWIW, here's the biggest known risk: asteroid 1950 DA has 300:1 odds for hitting the Earth....but in the year 2880.
 
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Originally posted by Phobos
Good job, Lincoln Near Earth Asteroid Research Program!

FWIW, here's the biggest known risk: asteroid 1950 DA has 300:1 odds for hitting the Earth....but in the year 2880.
yeah i recall reading about that... of course like this one over time in its journey (especially one that far off) things can change.. just as this one says it will probably decrease to no change of impact after it gets closer and more data is observed... still pretty interesting...

i suppose an asteroid could be on course to hit us at any given time and we just havent detected it yet right? depending on how fast it is traveling and its size..
 
  • #4
russ_watters
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Originally posted by kleinma
i suppose an asteroid could be on course to hit us at any given time and we just havent detected it yet right? depending on how fast it is traveling and its size..
Yep. Happens a few times a year that we have a near miss with a continent killer and we don't detect them until they are already here or even past.
 
  • #5
Ivan Seeking
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Two brief interviews:

Alan Hale, Ph.D., Astronomer and Director, Southwest Institute for Space Research, Cloudcroft, New Mexico:

Mark Boslough, Ph.D., Physicist and Principal Member, Technical Staff, Sandia National Laboratories, Computer modeling of climate, evolution and asteroid and comet impacts, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico:

http://www.earthfiles.com/news/news.cfm?ID=574&category=Science
 

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