There are a whole lot of dangerous methods to get up from a nap. Getting hit with an area rock is definitely considered one of them.
One afternoon in 1954, Ann Hodges was dozing on her front room sofa. At 12:45 pm, a meteorite ripped by way of her front room ceiling and woke her up with a direct hit to the abdomen. The occasion left her with minor accidents and the dignity of being the primary particular person in recorded historical past to ever be hit straight by a meteorite, however that’s not for an absence of alternatives.
Asteroids can and do hit Earth. Between 1988 and 2017, NASA recorded over 700 fireballs created by overseas objects getting into our ambiance. Whereas the percentages of a direct hit are extraordinarily low, the sheer variety of occurrences is sufficient to make us surprise: might one other strike happen? If that’s the case, how harmful wouldn’t it be? In spite of everything, dinosaur extinction was probably attributable to a significant asteroid colliding with Earth close to present-day Chicxulub, Mexico.
Hoping to keep away from an identical destiny for humanity, NASA scientists are at the moment creating methods to detect and put together for a big asteroid collision. As a part of their efforts, they’ve developed three completely different plans for the way people might deflect an asteroid and steer it away from impacting Earth.
One plan entails utilizing sheer pressure to push the asteroid in a brand new route, whereas others name for manipulating gravitational attraction or creating high-powered lasers to ship the rock in a brand new route. Whatever the deflection technique, the feasibility of a plan depends upon the scale of the asteroid and how briskly it’s approaching. For that reason, NASA can be devoting sources to looking for asteroids and mapping their paths of orbit.
To be taught extra about NASA’s analysis and the way it might forestall impolite awakenings from our naps of the long run, watch the video above and subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Additionally, make certain to learn Brian Resnick’s in-depth analysis of asteroid analysis, which options interviews with NASA scientists.