But given all the references to Bruce Willis in Armageddon, I felt compelled to point out the obvious. Since Obama’s president, we have no way to get there now. Bruce, like the rest of us, would have to just sit and watch it hit.
This is just too cool!
ABC however, ran the story that it was the result of “solar wind”. I’m not buying that with an asteroid almost in our atmosphere today. Coincidence? I don’t think so. I’m more inclined to think asteroid 2012 DA14 gave it a nudge in our general direction.
This is just stunning:
Deb Feyerick had to ask Bill Nye if asteroids might be a by-product of global warming.
And Obama still says Fox is not a reliable news source.
Although Nye more or less dodges the direct question and runs with his own self-promotion, I have to applaud him for not doing what I would have done and laughed hysterically.
Or, better named probably, that really big rock for Valentine’s Day your babe always wanted?
There is no risk of it hitting Earth. BUT, this flyby will be so close it will mess up any future predictions of where it might go. People are already speculating it will hit Earth the next time. But, chances are MUCH more likely it will go spinning out into space or simply get eaten by the Sun. Even IF it did hit Earth, it’s not a life-ending sized rock. Maybe Tunguska sized blast, but even that is doubtful.
Last night Apophis made a pretty close pass to the Earth. It was actually visible if you knew what you were looking for and when:
What’s even cooler is they’ve now decided Apophis is bigger than they originally thought. It’s now thought to be about 1,000 feet long. That’s pretty dang big. That’s life-on-Earth changing big. It wouldn’t end life on Earth, but it could completely obliterate a very, very, large city. Which leads me to this rather bothersome article in Astronomynow.com.
First we got:
The asteroid will return to Earth’s neighbourhood again in 2036, but quite how close it will come then is uncertain, as the 2029 approach is predicted to alter its orbit substantially. Obtaining improved physical parameters for Apophis and its orbit is thus of great importance in being able to make better predictions of its future trajectory.
Then, in the same article, we got:
“Although Apophis initially caught public interest as a possible Earth impactor, which is now considered highly improbable for the foreseeable future, it is of considerable interest in its own right, and as an example of the class of Near Earth Objects,” says Goran Pilbratt, ESA’s Herschel Project Scientist.
Now, I think they’ve always felt that the 2029 pass will alter it’s orbit. And, I’m sure they probably felt they had a good idea how it might affect it’s orbit. But, as the 2013 pass has already shown, they were basing that information on bad information. It was off by about 75% apparently.
Okay doomsday peeps, here you go. That means, realistically for now, they have no clue where it will go in 2029.
On this historic last repetitive day of my lifetime, another significant event is occurring:
Toutatis is no slouch. It’s about 3 miles long and solid rock. And, it’s coming as close to Earth as it will get for about 57 years. If you’re lucky enough to spot it in the sky, your view would look something like this:
From the ground it’s just not terribly exciting. What WOULD be exciting is if it got just a tiny bit closer. Which it will do in November, 2069.
If you look up in the sky tonight, it’s gonna be a little more crowded than usual:
2010 RF12 and 2010 RX30 are supposed to pass by today. RF12 is especially close. Both well within the Moon’s orbit. Neither pose any threat. Even if they did hit, it wouldn’t be that big a deal by my very simple calculations. They’re both kinda small.
As many as we’ve missed over the years, I’m gonna bet this happens a lot more than people know.
I think this is funny as hell!
It wouldn’t be nearly as funny if it weren’t so dead-on accurate.
Sometimes I totally feel like I’m wasting my time here. On July 20th, which was what, ten days ago? I wrote about the impact on Jupiter. That led me to a conversation with a friend who mentioned the Manson Crater in Iowa. This monster hit was so big it obliterated all life in what would the United States in seconds, and all life on North America within hours. The rest of the world was rendered quite uncomfortable for some time after. At first I thought he was referring to the Chicxulub Crater in the Yucatan, which did pretty much the same thing thousands of years after Manson. But he wasn’t, it was totally different. Neither of the these should be confused with the Tunguska Impact over Siberia. Other than leveling millions of trees over hundreds of square miles, it really was just a minor footnote of an impact. There are plenty of other smaller impacts throughout modern history documented up to this year. In simple terms, it happens all the time. The only thing that makes a difference is size. The one that just hit Jupiter was pretty big. However, we get them occasionally on Earth as well. We’ve had a few near misses in modern history. And, there have probably been a few that did hit that was never documented.
After writing about both Jupiter and the Manson Crater, Livescience felt compelled to write this article today:
Believe it or not, they come to the conclusion that it could indeed happen. It’s just not terribly likely it will happen any time soon as the universe in our neck of the woods isn’t terribly crowded at this time. Don’t tell that to Jupiter tho. However, on the upside, Jupiter and the Sun are our huge vacuum cleaners sucking up all the dirt floating around us. Other than an occasional black eye, it’s hard to do much damage to Jupiter.
Now, if you’re really concerned about this happening any time soon without the news going bonkers about it beforehand, you can subscribe to the Asteroid Watch newsfeed, which I have over there on the sidebar. They even have a handy desktop widget for those so inclined.
This is cool:
That is a time-lapse gif. Right in the center, you can see a very small, very dim dot, moving. That is asteroid 2009 DD45. It will pass between the Earth and Moon today. It will barely skim where our satellites orbit. It is THAT close! We got basically a two day notice on this one. However, it is very small. One larger than this one hit late last year and no one really noticed. But, it just keeps irking me that we:
- can’t find these things sooner.
- have absolutely no ability to do anything about them if they did pose a threat.
In this case, if it had been just a teenie weenie bit closer ( in AU’s ), it could have knocked out a satellite or two. If it had been a teenie weenie bit larger, it could have caused some serious damage on Earth.
The Obama administration is trying to ban all weapons in space. I think this is a very unwise decision. I’m not worried about Al Qaida in space. I am however, worried about a lot of stuff already in space coming down on us.