A Sunlight Shifted Asteroid Might Hit the Earth in 2068 with a 1200 Megaton Impact

Dave Tholen and collaborators have detected light from the sun is moving the 300 meter near-Earth asteroid Apophis by 170 meters per year. This acceleration means that Apophis might hit the earth in 2068. Detailed analysis on the next close pass in 2029 will determine if Apophis is a risk. The Sentry Risk Table estimates …

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2022 Mission to Asteroid With Nickel that Might Help Power 22nd Century

NASA plans to launch the Psyche mission to explore a metal-rock asteroid that is also called Psyche. The critical design review is done and construction has started. They plan to launch August 2022 on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy. The asteroid Psyche is largely metallic iron and nickel. It is similar to Earth’s core and could …

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Most Important Meteorite is a Window to Origins of Life and Solar System

Aguas Zarcas is a meteorite that broke up over Chile in 2019 but it is new meteorite sample that contains nucleobases that are part of RNA. A similar meteorite his fifty years ago but this is the first when humans have sequencing technology to study it. This meteorite provides a window into the origins of …

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Asteroid Bennu Has a Chance for Gigaton Impact Around 2175-2199

The Palermo Technical Impact Hazard Scale for asteroids is a logarithmic scale used by astronomers to rate the potential hazard of impact of a near-earth object (NEO). It combines two types of data—probability of impact and estimated kinetic yield—into a single “hazard” value. A rating of 0 means the hazard is equivalent to the background …

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Carnival of Space 639 – 75 Temporary Moons Should Be Detected Over the Next Ten Years

The Carnival of Space 639 is up at Urban Astronomer. Universe Today – The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope Could Find More of Earth’s Transient Moons. Earth also has a population of what are known as “transient Moons”. These are a subset of Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) that are temporarily scooped up by Earth’s gravity and assume …

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