Is Earth safe?: a “chaos asteroid” approaches Earth

The asteroid Apophis, named after the Egyptian god of chaos and could hit our planet in 2068, will approach the Earth on 6 March at a still harmless distance.

Considered very dangerous, asteroid 99942, aka Apophis, is due to pass nearly 16 million kilometers from Earth on 6 March, according to the American SpaceWeather service.

According to the data, this celestial body with a 370-meter wingspan named after the Egyptian god of chaos will be able to be observed with amateur telescopes. Those who do not have one will be able to wait until 2029 when it will pass between the Earth and a network of satellites and be visible to the naked eye.

A very close passage expected in 2068

Although its passage in 2029 does not involve significant risks, in 2068, it will return to pass very close to our planet. And, according to recent calculations by University of Hawaii astronomers, there is a one in 380,000 chance that Apophis will eventually crash into Earth.

Even if this scenario’s probability remains slim, the consequences of such a collision would be catastrophic.

To avoid this, NASA and SpaceX have launched the DART mission, which will serve as a rehearsal for the deflection of potentially deadly asteroids.

Nzegwu

When I am not online, I will be in my inbox reading emails. Feel free to mail me. Email: nzegwu@afrinik.com

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