(ORDO NEWS) — NASA scientists have issued a warning about a possible collision between asteroid Bennu and Earth in the future. Bennu, a near-Earth object (NEO), has been closely monitored since its discovery in 1999.
According to experts, there is a possibility that Bennu could pass through a “gravitational keyhole”, which would put it on a collision course with Earth in 2182.
According to the latest research from the OSIRIS-REx science team, the probability of Bennu colliding with Earth is 0.037% (1 in 2700). This probability depends largely on the next flyby in 2135, during which Bennu will come close enough to Earth that the gravitational pull could change its trajectory towards collision with our planet on September 24, 2182.
Bennu is about a third of a mile wide, equivalent to about three city blocks. Although Bennu is smaller than the asteroid that caused the extinction of the dinosaurs 66 million years ago, which was six miles wide, it still poses a significant threat. If it hits Earth, it could affect an area the size of Texas.
According to IFLS.com, an impact with Bennu would release about 1,200 megatons of energy, which is 24 times the power of any man-made nuclear weapon. The potential consequences of such a collision would be catastrophic.
Davide Farnocchia, research leader from the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies, emphasized the importance of this research. “We’ve never modeled the trajectory of an asteroid with such precision,” he said.
The data collected by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft gave scientists very precise information, allowing them to calculate Bennu’s future trajectory with a high degree of confidence until 2135. Although the likelihood of an asteroid impact
in 2182 is still relatively small, the possible consequences require attention and further study. NASA and other space agencies around the world continue to develop strategies for detecting, tracking and mitigating the risks associated with NEOs. It is hoped that by understanding and preparing for these potential threats, humanity will be able to secure your future.
Contact us: [email protected]
To eliminate any confusion arising from different time zones and daylight saving changes, all times displayed on our platforms are in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).