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Apophis may strike Earth in 2068

Posted on Saturday, 2 March, 2013 | Comment icon 38 comments | News tip by: Waspie_Dwarf

Image credit: ESA

Infamous asteroid Apophis is in with a chance of hitting the Earth in just over 50 years time.

Apophis has hit headlines several times over the last few years, after its discovery in 2004 it was initially believed to be in with a very high chance of a collision in the year 2029. Fortunately this was ruled out, as was a further chance to hit in 2036, but now scientists at NASA who have been analyzing its trajectory have determined that there may be a chance of it hitting after all - in 2068.

Fortunately however the odds of an impact are very small indeed as far as apocalyptic asteroids go. "Only one of the potential impacts has a probability of impact greater than 1-in-a-million," read an article from the science team. "There is a 2-meter wide keyhole that leads to an impact in 2068, with impact odds of about 2.3 in a million."

"The 325-meter (1,066-foot) asteroid 99942 Apophis, that will safely fly by the Earth in 2029 and 2036, may strike the planet in 2068, according to an article published on the NASA website."

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #29 Posted by Purifier on 3 March, 2013, 10:04
Well at least we don't have to worry much with [u]this[/u] one. Now all we have worry about are the ones they haven't found yet.
Comment icon #30 Posted by Frank Merton on 3 March, 2013, 11:12
No the odds of a collision sound small but as I said we really don't know in good enough detail to be that sure when it comes so close. We should worry about this one. It doesn't have to be at the top of the priorities list, but it should certainly be watched very carefully.
Comment icon #31 Posted by Capt Amerika on 4 March, 2013, 13:20
An asteroid impact kills indiscriminately, we can fix our own over population problems quite easily. We could easily thin out the herd by stopping all the taxpayer funded welfare and handouts. No more "Free Health care" - Pay your way. Let nature run its course, you work you eat, you don't, well.... been nice knowing you. Maybe we wouldn't have 30% dropout rates then either. at some point you have to stop working to keep people alive that do not contribute to society in any way except to produce offspring.
Comment icon #32 Posted by woopypooky on 5 March, 2013, 11:33
misleading ....1:10 is a chance, 1:1000,000,000 is also a chance
Comment icon #33 Posted by skookum on 5 March, 2013, 11:48
I will be 94 so if I am still about I will be overdue something finishing me off.
Comment icon #34 Posted by Mikko-kun on 8 March, 2013, 18:16
As if NASA or any could give a 100% sure calculation... sure, you can get the 99% and scratch, but the observatory technology doesn't reach that far beyond kuiper belt to tell us whether it could alter it's course far before that time or not. I trust in them to be able to calculate if there is a greater likelihood of it hitting us, but not that it actually wont hit us. They cant predict these things so accurately because the course can be changed due to collisions and gravitational (or quantum if gravitation doesn't exist??) influences with objects we're not aware of. As a solu... [More]
Comment icon #35 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 8 March, 2013, 18:54
Yours is a very confused post, it is difficult to work out what it is you are trying to say. You also seem to be picking percentages out of mid air. Firstly asteroids in the Kuiper belt are of no concern. They are no threat to the Earth. Secondly, whilst you are correct (if I understand you correctly) that orbits can not be determined accurately over very long periods, they can certainly be calculated accurately over periods of a century. That is more than enough time to deflect an asteroid into a safe orbit.
Comment icon #36 Posted by Mikko-kun on 8 March, 2013, 19:14
I [u]threw in[/u] 99% and scratch for that century's accuracy you mentioned because of what's beyond Kuiper belt and in there too, affecting the orbits. I didn't say asteroids there were of concern, on the contrary. What's going unnoticed in the Kuiper belt and beyond can shift the odds in both directions. Basic deduction, so I dont take a too trusting stance on what NASA's given odds even if I trust their calculations.
Comment icon #37 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 11 March, 2013, 15:05
Like I said, you just invented a statistic that has no basis in reality. Are you a politician? What's going on in the Kuiper belt is almost totally irrelevant, the vast majority of asteroids which threaten the Earth originate in the asteroid belt. Despite what films like Armageddon suggest it is highly unlikely that an asteroid will be thrown straight out of the asteroid belt and on to a direct collision course with Earth. The asteroids which are most likely to cause problems are one which have orbits which cross that of the Earth. These are can (and are) calculated with a high degree ... [More]
Comment icon #38 Posted by Mikko-kun on 11 March, 2013, 22:54
We're talking about different things, I guess I went off-topic if apophis was an asteroid from the belt... I thought it was from outside our solar system. Sorry for my reading comprehension if that's the case, not the first time that happened. I didn't know people actually worried about the asteroids in the belt too. I'd be more concerned about what's outside the belt, what's there that no one's picked yet with their telescopes and all, thought it might be more relevant to ponder the chances there, considering that we've only recently discovered regularly orbiti... [More]

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