asteroid

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NASA, FEMA Simulated Asteroid Strike on Los Angeles

In their scenario, city had 4-year warning

(Newser) - A 330-foot asteroid on a collision course with downtown Los Angeles. Four years to try to stop it—or carry out mass evacuations ahead of certain devastation. That's not the plot of an unoriginal new movie, but the scenario behind a recent NASA-FEMA exercise, the New York Times reports.... More »

New NASA 'Scout' System Silently Keeping You Safe

"Scout" and "Sentry" systems monitor the cosmos for any asteroids that could threaten Earth

(Newser) - NASA is hard at work to protect the Earth from asteroid threats, NPR reports. The agency's new "Scout" detection system scans the skies above our planet for small, nearby objects that might enter Earth's orbit. In fact, a small one between 5 and 25 meters across will... More »

NASA to Chase Asteroid That Has Slight Chance of Hitting Earth

But even if Bennu does strike in 170 years, it won't be end times

(Newser) - There's an asteroid out there that might slam into Earth in about 170 years, but contrary to some recent scary-sounding headlines, it won't wipe out Earthlings if it does, reports Space.com . "We're not talking about an asteroid that could destroy the Earth," says Dante... More »

Death by Human Extinction Far More Likely Than by Car Crash

We should be more afraid of asteroids, pandemics, and Terminators

(Newser) - Pandemics, super-volcanoes, nuclear war, climate change, asteroids, and murderous artificial intelligence. You're not more likely to die from any one of those things than in a car crash. But put all those things together, and, well, that changes things a bit, the Atlantic reports. According to the annual Global ... More »

Asteroid Could Come Within 11K Miles of Earth Next Month

But NASA says there's no reason to panic

(Newser) - An asteroid could pass very close—cosmically speaking—to the Earth next month. Asteroid 2013 TX68 is scheduled to pass us by on March 5, coming as close as 11,000 miles (or a little more than the distance between Seattle and South Africa), CBS News reports. However it could... More »

We're Getting a Christmas Eve Asteroid

There's no danger of Asteroid 163899-Santa collision

(Newser) - After Halloween's " zombie comet ," there will be another celestial visitor on Christmas Eve, and Asteroid 163899 is about as festive as a space rock can get, which is not at all. The object—also known as 2003 SD220—will be at its closest on Dec. 24, when... More »

'Halloween' Space Rock Is a Dead Comet

Approaching 'space zombie' looks like a skull

(Newser) - The "Halloween asteroid" set to make its closest approach to Earth today has turned out to be something spookier: a dead comet. Scientist say object 2015 TB145 looked like an asteroid when it was first spotted a few weeks ago. but closer inspection suggests that it is a comet... More »

'Spooky' Asteroid Will Be Very Close on Halloween

It's moving very fast in an 'eccentric' orbit

(Newser) - In what sounds like the setup to a sci-fi horror movie, an asteroid deemed "extremely eccentric" by NASA and "strikingly spooky" by Discovery will be very close to Earth on Halloween. NASA says the asteroid, 2015 TB145, is up to 1,542 feet in diameter and will be... More »

Scientists to See If They Can Save Earth From Asteroid

Mission in 2022 will be a test run on preventing collision

(Newser) - Come 2022, scientists will attempt to save all of humanity from an asteroid. Calm down, it's just a trial run. The joint US-European AIDA—that's Asteroid Deflection and Assessment—mission intends to crash a probe into a 525-foot-wide asteroid known as Didymoon to see if the impact will... More »

NASA: The World Will Continue Past Sept. 28

Agency crushes Internet rumor that asteroid strike is coming

(Newser) - It's your prerogative should you choose to live the next month of your life like it's your last, but the majority of us will live to see October, NASA says. The words of encouragement come after Internet rumors sparked fear that an asteroid strike, allegedly due between Sept.... More »

Asteroid Named After Anti-Taliban Activist

Malala Yousafzai honored by NASA researcher

(Newser) - A dark rock you might spot orbiting the sun every 5.5 years now has its own name: 316201 Malala (2010 ML48) . The part we all understand—Malala—refers to Pakistani activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai, 17, who drew the world's attention by defying Taliban rule... More »

Biggest-Ever Asteroid Impact Found

Asteroid broke in two, scarring Earth more than 300M years ago

(Newser) - More than 300 million years after a massive asteroid collided with Earth, scientists have found the planet's 118-mile-long scars. Experts say two huge underground domes in the Earth's crust, about 19 miles beneath central Australia's Warburton Basin, are evidence of the largest and most powerful asteroid impact... More »

Biggest Asteroid Fly-By Until 2027 Happens Monday

Grab your binoculars to spot 2004 BL86, NASA says

(Newser) - If you've ever wanted to get a good look at an asteroid, Monday night will be your best chance for more than a decade. Asteroid 2004 BL86, a space rock about a third of a mile in diameter, will be 745,000 miles away on Monday, around three times... More »

How We Could Survive After the Apocalypse

Joshua Pearce, David Denkenberger explain how survivors could eat for 5 years

(Newser) - Imagine this: an apocalyptic event strikes the planet—say, a super-volcano, asteroid, or nuclear winter. While a small portion of the population would die, most of us wouldn't. But the skies would blacken, our crops would die, and the darkness would keep us from sowing new ones. (Yes, LED-light-equipped... More »

Japan Launches Explorer to Blast Crater in Asteroid

Hayabusa 2 will shoot asteroid, collect rock samples for clues to Earth's origins

(Newser) - A Japanese space explorer took off today on a six-year journey to blow a crater in a remote asteroid and bring back rock samples in hopes of gathering clues to the origin of Earth. Hayabusa 2 is expected to reach the asteroid in mid-2018, spend about 18 months studying it,... More »

US Keeping Nukes in Case of ... Asteroids?

Threat cited as reason to keep old warheads

(Newser) - Somebody's been watching Armageddon: American nuclear authorities say they have delayed getting rid of old warhead components because they could help protect the world from killer asteroids. Authorities say the warheads are being kept "pending a senior-level government evaluation of their use in planetary defense against earthbound asteroids,... More »

Crater Mystery Has Nicaragua Stumped

If a passing asteroid didn't create the huge hole, then what did?

(Newser) - When an asteroid passed by Earth and then a huge crater showed up in Nicaragua, the government there put two and two together and figured an errant piece of space rock was responsible for the hole. But scientists have since cast doubt on the theory, and now Nicaragua is asking... More »

Passing Asteroid Tied to Blast in Nicaragua

Scientists say 'Pitbull' 2014 RC caused Managua blast

(Newser) - A house-sized asteroid nicknamed "Pitbull" came close to Earth over the weekend—and appears to have taken a bite out of Nicaragua. There was a mysterious blast in the capital, Managua, late Saturday night, and government scientists believe it's connected to asteroid 2014 RC, reports Reuters . The explosion... More »

Asteroid Zips by Earth This Weekend

'Pitbull' won't hit us, though

(Newser) - Sky-watchers, take note: An asteroid is going to whiz by our planet this weekend. Asteroid 2014 RC, aka "Pitbull," will make its closest pass 25,000 miles over New Zealand about 2:15pm Eastern tomorrow, reports USA Today . Nobody will be able to see the 60-foot-wide rock with... More »

'Bad Timing' Wiped Out Dinosaurs

Asteroid hit at just the wrong time, researchers say

(Newser) - The huge asteroid that hit Earth 66 million years ago was very bad timing for the dinosaurs, a new study says—it wiped them out, but they probably would have survived if it had hit at a "more convenient" time. The impact in what is now Mexico is almost... More »

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