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Asteroids: Space rock with nuclear bomb-levels of impact sighted
Many space enthusiasts have always noticed how frequent asteroids have been coming close to the Earth’s vicinity. Now, NASA has spotted a new asteroid hurtling close to the planet with the force of a nuclear bomb.
Express reports that the space agency has sighted an asteroid referred to as 2010 RF, hurtling towards the Earth. The Center for Near-Earth Objects is keeping a close eye on this asteroid that has been on its way to the planet over the course of a decade. Sentry, the space agency’s tracking system, can predict the chances of an asteroid making an impact on Earth, moving past the atmosphere and into our turf. It was able to predict that there is a 5.3 percent chance of making it into the Earth.
Do not be fooled when it comes to RF, which measures 0.007 kilometers in diameter and weighing 500,000 pounds, however. While RF may still be a relatively tiny asteroid, the impact it can give, according to NASA, is 9 kilotons, which is equivalent to 9,000 tons of TNT, which is the same as a small nuclear bomb.
On the bright side, the space agency predicted that it might take years before this possibility might come true the first time. NASA explained that because of the unlikely nature of RF colliding with the Earth, it is very likely that it will be a false alarm. It is also worth noting that potential asteroid collisions will have already been known years before it happens, and by that time, advancements and measures will have already be taken to make sure it gets deflected.
RF’s first potential impact date is estimated to take place on 5th September of 2095.
But RF is not the only asteroid that can bring on a catastrophic impact if it ever collides with the Earth. The Sun previously reported that an asteroid referred to as Apophis, named after the “God of Chaos” in Greek mythology, is also going in the direction of Earth over the course of the next 84 years.
This particular asteroid is also aptly named because it can give 1,200,000 kilotons of energy, which is more than the impact of the nuclear bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima back in World War II. The first potential impact date of this asteroid is on 12th April 2060.