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Does asteroid Apophis pose a threat ?

Posted on Thursday, 10 January, 2013 | Comment icon 21 comments | News tip by: Waspie_Dwarf

Image credit: NASA

In December 2004 Apophis was shaping up to be a major concern, but is that still the case now ?

As the 325m wide asteroid swings around for another close pass, astronomers have been taking the opportunity to continue learning as much as possible about what was once considered to be the most dangerous object in the sky. When it was discovered in 2004 it looked as if there was a 1 in 300 chance of a collision with the Earth, prompting NASA to ask astronomers to record their observations in an effort to help refine this figure. At one point the odds worsened to 1 in 45.

Fortunately we now know that the odds of a collision are much, much smaller with the chance of a 2036 hit at 1 in 7,143,000. Even so, Apophis is still an object of great interest and due to its orbit is something we will be hearing a lot more about in the coming decades.

"Asteroid Apophis arrives this week for a close pass of Earth."

  View: Full article |  Source: Guardian Unlimited

  Discuss: View comments (21)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #12 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 10 January, 2013, 22:05
The change in orbit can be calculated in advance IF the distance that the asteroid will pass Earth in 2029 is known with enough accuracy. That calculation has now been made and an impact in 2039 ruled out (see ). Totally wrong. We've been able to calculate orbits with extraordinary accuracy since the days of Kepler and Newton. The only reason there was doubt about the possibility of an an impact in 2036 was because the orbit was not known with sufficient accuracy. Now that the orbit has been refined the uncertainty can be reduced to the point where an impact in 2036 can be ruled out.... [More]
Comment icon #13 Posted by Eonwe on 11 January, 2013, 0:09
At least if we get hit we don't all die.. Silver lining.
Comment icon #14 Posted by dan-paul-mark on 11 January, 2013, 0:16
i heard that the solar systems orbit fluctuates up and down, and the last time we were at the point we're heading towards soon; which is a large asteroid belt, was when the dinosaurs were wiped by the collision. anyone no if this is true?
Comment icon #15 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 11 January, 2013, 0:21
To be honest I'm not really sure what you mean, your question seems to me to be a confused conglomerate of ideas. If by the "solar system's orbit fluctuating up and down" you mean does it move within the galaxy, yes it does, but there is no asteroid belt that it is travelling towards.
Comment icon #16 Posted by Merc14 on 11 January, 2013, 1:13
Is your profession in this field? Regardless I appreciate the easily understood answers to the arcane questions most of us have when dealing with the study of the universe.
Comment icon #17 Posted by dan-paul-mark on 11 January, 2013, 1:31
haha fair enough just something i'd heard. seemed unlikely as you'd expect to have heard more about it if it were true
Comment icon #18 Posted by coolguy on 11 January, 2013, 4:51
Is this the one we can see with the naked eye. We can get hit again some day
Comment icon #19 Posted by Merc14 on 11 January, 2013, 5:28
This planet will absolutely be hit by another asteroid in the next 7 billion years the sun exists. Well, 4B before it starts expanding and sterilizes this rock. WD can correct the numbers but we will be hit and if we can't advance to the stage where we can stop it, then we will cease to exist as a species. It probably won't happen in your lifetime bt it mihght. Regardless, worrying about dying from weird things like asteroid strikes is making yourself dead already. Yes, 99% certainty the earth will be hit again but we will either have figured out the engineering to move the t... [More]
Comment icon #20 Posted by redbundy on 11 January, 2013, 10:27
When (what time) and where (will it be visable all over the planet or just from a certain country or continent) will this be taking place? I'd like to try and see it. Does anybody know?
Comment icon #21 Posted by stevewinn on 11 January, 2013, 18:01
Thanks for the reply mate, glad you cottoned onto the star wars phrase.

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