Science: Asteroid Apophis Won’t Collide With Earth in 2036
Scientists feared a massive asteroid called Apophis, named after the Ancient God of destruction, was going to collide with the earth in 2036. Scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA have effectively ruled out that the the asteroid, which passed closed to Earth on Wednesday, wont hit our planet after all.
The gigantic asteroid measures 300 meters across, which to put in perspective is about three-and-a-half football fields in length. Scientists said it would explode with the force of about 500 megatons if it were to hit our plant.
Back in 2004, scientists thought the asteroid had a one in 45 chance of hitting us in 2009. It came extremely close to Earth, passing with 32,000 km, which is nearer than many satellites. Aphophis will fly by us again in 2029 and 2036.
When it hurtles by Earth on April 13, 2029, it will be one the the closest flyby of an asteroid its size, coming within 19,400 miles above Earth. Even though we are in the clear concerning Apophis, NASA’s Near Earth Object program is still tracking more 9,000 objects and say thousands are still unknown.