The USA NASA Department earlier stated that an asteroid will make its way past earth sometime this year. No particular date has been given but it has got us wondering, What will be the Effect of an Asteroid hitting Earth?
Well in this post I will be talking about asteroids and the Effect of an asteroid hitting the earth.
What will happen if an asteroid hits earth?
One function of NASA’s Astronomers are to monitor the space for anything coming into the earth orbit as there are many asteroid, comets and meteoroids that fly through space. One of the frequent rocks that hit earth is the meteoroid which is often regarded as the shooting star. Meteoroids are often very small, within the range of one meter (1m) and are very harmless to earth.
Although large asteroid strikes on a rare occurrence but the smaller ones are always doing some bombarding on earth. Maybe you do not know, earth is bombarded with a lot of space dust up to 100 tons and small asteroids the size of a small car every year (according to NASA). The good thing about this rocks hitting earth is that majority of them burn up before reaching the ground.
Asteroids are metallic rocks that are 1 meter or more in diameter can be harmful, and when they come near earth as Near Earth Object (NEO), they need to be monitored. When asteroids become near earth objects Astronomers start to monitor them to make sure they are not PHA (potentially hazardous asteroids) and that can become a nightmare for earth (although scientist and astronomers say that we are not likely to see a PHA anytime soon, so we can prepare for one in the nearest future). In case of a PHA, there will be more information about one unlike misinformation on volcanoes and earthquakes and NASA have been looking for ways to divert or destroy any potentially hazardous asteroids either by using a gravity tractor to divert it or by using nuclear bombs to destroy it but NASA is still working out how to get this done (so if we are to have a large asteroid like what missed us in 2019, NASA isn’t really prepared to combat it and what could be done is evacuation of people). Since we know we aren’t fully prepared to fight a PHA, what would happen to us if one decides to pay us a visit?
None of us might have been around then, but astronomers made us understand that 66 million years ago, we had a PHA visit earth which ended the Cretaceous period. The asteroid was about 11 to 81 Km (7 to 50 mi) in diameter with a mass of 1.0×1015 and 4.6 ×1017Kg. The asteroid was believed to hit earth with a velocity of 20 kilometer per second. The asteroid is called the Chicxulub impactor asteroid. The asteroid made an impact on the ground that everything within 600 miles radius disappeared in seconds. The impact of the asteroid caused a tsunami over 1000 ft high, an earthquake of 10.1 on a rector scale and so much dust and other particles that the sun was blocked out from reaching earth which led to an ice age. It is believed that this earthquake wiped out almost all earths species including the Dinosaurs.
Astronomers say there might be other asteroids that will become near earth Objects but are not certain to bombard earth. An asteroid the size of a house can have the same impact as a nuclear bomb and it is said that asteroid as big as a football field come towards earth every 2000 years and one missed earth in the summer of 2019, it was called 2019 OK as it flew by earth about 70,000 km about 1/5 the distance of the earth to the moon and astronomers in NASA didn’t notice it until about 24 hours to its near collision.
What do you think would have happened if 2019 OK had hit earth?
The asteroid could have caused a damage of over 80KM across its radius.
There are a lot of other asteroid that seem to pose threat to earth in the nearest future as we can be certain they will not have any impact with earth even though NASA says it is okay for now. These asteroid are (85713) 1998 SS49 which is a large as 3km in diameter and part of the Apollo group is meant to pass near earth in the future even closer than the moon, another is 4179 Toutatis (discovered in 1989, and about 2.5 – 5 kilometer in diameter with a mass of 50.5 trillion kg) it is meant to pass close by earth but if it collides with earth, it is possible to end a large majority of life and have a large effect on the planet. Do not be scared, Toutatis had passed close by earth before in 2012, as close as 6,900,000 km and it is meant to pass again in 2069 two times closer to earth at 2,969,310 km near earth. The scary things about this asteroids is that they can change direction posing more threat to earth. Another asteroid is the (53319) 1999 JM8 which is about 7 kilometer in diameter (just slightly smaller than the asteroid that wiped out the Cretaceous period). It is a frequent passerby around earth and is not often seen until almost reaching near earth. What do you think will happen if it doesn’t pass by earth but rather pass through us, what do you think will happen.
None of these asteroids are foreseen to hit earth but if they do, they will cause a worldwide panic just like the COVID-19 pandemic. Also if they are to hit earth, it is likely that it hits the sea/ocean is 75% of earth is water (Just my prediction) but this would cause serious tsunami if it does and it if does hit land maybe a place like New York city, Lagos, Beijing, Tokyo, Mumbai, Dhaka, Cairo, Mexico city, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Delhi, Rio De Janeiro or Istanbul, what do you think will happen?
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