Don’t look up, or better yes: many asteroids can approach the Earth undetected

A group of astronomers funded by NASA warned of this Many asteroids can approach the Earth undetectedAccording to an article available on the website of the scientific journal Icarus to be published next month.

After what In 2019, an asteroid with a diameter of about 100 meters will pass at a maximum speed of 70,000 km From our planet and discovered only 24 hours ago, scientists conducted an investigation to prevent similar situations.

What’s going on?

Algorithms that control observing telescopes in the search for celestial bodies have been programmed to detect moving objects, taking into account the fact that as they approach the Earth It appears to be drifting westward in the sky due to the planet’s eastward rotation.

However, when asteroids approach our planet from the eastern part of the sky, the Earth rotates and Its curved orbit around the sun can make celestial bodies appear stationary, which could confuse the scientific community.

“Studies should pay special attention to scanning the sky in this direction and actively tracking new, slow-moving objects,” the text reads, detailing that 50% of asteroids approaching Earth from the east could be hit. Periods of slow motion that make detection difficult.

Richard Winscott, a professor at the University of Hawaii and lead author of the study said:People ‘shouldn’t lose sleep’ over the potential for harm to our planet From the impact of a “devastating asteroid”.

However, the astronomer pointed out that It is necessary to observe celestial bodies that may pass close to the Earth Therefore, in the event that one of them is discovered to be a real danger, to be able to do something about it to minimize the consequences.

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The United States Congress has assigned NASA a mission Identification of 90% of asteroids with a diameter of 140 meters or larger. Similarly, the US space agency is developing ways to prevent this kind of impact on Earth, as published RT.

Lovell Loxley

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