MAY 28, 2018 06:39 PM PDT
How Will NASA Protect Earth From Potentially-Hazardous Asteroids?
WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard
3 5 99

Earth is no stranger to asteroids, but that's no reason to let our guard down. While many smaller asteroids break up in the planet's atmosphere, a larger one could potentially reach the surface and impose cataclysmic results.

One potentially-hazardous asteroid (PHA) is Bennu, and astronomers say it will reach our planetary neighborhood by the year 2135. Bennu is enormous, comparable in size to the Empire State Building, and there's a 1 in 2700 chance that it could crash into Earth.

While the odds are in our favor, NASA's Planetary Defense Coordination Office is taking the event very seriously and considering all possible asteroid deflection methods just in case it becomes necessary.

If Bennu gets too close to Earth for comfort, then NASA could deploy a gravity tractor to tug the asteroid away from Earth or slam into it with several kinetic impactors to change its course. Both methods are purely theoretical, but they're the best we have until we get a chance to test them out.

While most of us won't live to see the day Bennu gets close to Earth, it's essential for future generations that we get serious about protecting our planet from asteroid-related close calls. After all, there are thousands of near-Earth objects and potentially-hazardous asteroids all around us that pose genuine threats.
About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
MAY 09, 2018
Videos
MAY 09, 2018
How Much Do We Really Know about Bipolar Disorder?
Bipolar disorder has been in the news recently since singer Mariah Carey revealing her diagnosis. As it happens, other celebrities have battled bipolar inc
MAY 13, 2018
Videos
MAY 13, 2018
What Might Hearing From Aliens Actually Sound Like?
Astronomers have long-theorized about the presence of intelligent alien life elsewhere in the universe, but humankind has yet to discover it anywhere offic
MAY 16, 2018
Videos
MAY 16, 2018
Bioluminescence Lights Up San Diego Tide
Off the coast of San Diego, microscopic phytoplankton called dinoflagellates are putting on an amazing display of bioluminescence. Scientists at Scripps In
MAY 18, 2018
Videos
MAY 18, 2018
Seeing Inside of a Living Cell
The Allen Institute for Cell Science created a powerful tool for visualizing the human cell, called the Allen Integrated Cell. It will allow researchers to
JUN 17, 2018
Videos
JUN 17, 2018
DNA Sequencing Tells a Story of Human Migration
Researchers at Harvard Medical School are using modern sequencing technologies to learn more about our past.
JUN 19, 2018
Videos
JUN 19, 2018
Here Are a Few Good Reasons to Avoid Whale Carcasses
With whale beachings on the rise, it’s important to remind everyone about the dangers associated with approaching a whale carcass. While the dead wha
Loading Comments...