Asteroid Nearly Misses Earth Monday

At 5:45 a.m. (EST) Monday, an asteroid (DD45) with a diameter of 60 to 150 feet nearly crashed into Earth. The space rock sped past the planet at a distance of 49,000 miles, about one-fifth of the distance separating us from the moon and only two times as far as some satellites currently orbiting Earth.

“This was pretty darn close,” said astronomer Timothy Spahr of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Wednesday.

It seems the size of this asteroid is similar to one that blasted over 800 square miles of forested land in Siberia in 1908. DD45 was discovered only a few weeks ago by Australian scientists, who concluded right away that the object was no danger to our planet.

It’s frightening to think that an object with a diameter as small as 60 feet could vaporize over 800 miles of land. With only a few weeks of warning, do you think our governments could do something in time about a threat determined to be “risky?”

[Via AP]

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21 Responses to Asteroid Nearly Misses Earth Monday

    • Whoops, forgot to use “reply” to nest my previous reply. Sorry if I end up duping myself.

      The Tunguska crater is visible here at 60°53′ 09″N, 101°53′ 40″E

      • I’m pretty sure an 800-mile crater can cover more than the 2 minutes of difference between our coordinates. :D

        • Not an 800-mile crater, but an explosion that blew away 800 miles of forest.. that’s different!

        • Not an 800-mile crater, but an explosion that blew away 800 miles of forest.. that’s different!

        • Not an 800-mile crater, but an explosion that blew away 800 miles of forest.. that’s different!

  1. It's commonly believed that the Tunguska object never actually hit the ground, but exploded in the atmosphere before impact. It was the shock wave from this explosion that devastated 800 square miles of forest, flattening trees like matchsticks.

  2. It’s commonly believed that the Tunguska object never actually hit the ground, but exploded in the atmosphere before impact. It was the shock wave from this explosion that devastated 800 square miles of forest, flattening trees like matchsticks.

  3. >Comment by spaceman

    >doesn’t the title imply it hit us?

    Yes, actually, you are correct. They should have said 'nearly crashed' as they did in the first line of the story, or something along the lines of 'narrowly avoided.' 'Journalists' can't be bothered with the picky details of grammar and sentence structure these days.. ;-) Don't get me started.. ;-)

  4. >Comment by spaceman
    >doesn’t the title imply it hit us?

    Yes, actually, you are correct. They should have said ‘nearly crashed’ as they did in the first line of the story, or something along the lines of ‘narrowly avoided.’ ‘Journalists’ can’t be bothered with the picky details of grammar and sentence structure these days.. ;-) Don’t get me started.. ;-)

  5. >Comment by spaceman
    >doesn’t the title imply it hit us?

    Yes, actually, you are correct. They should have said ‘nearly crashed’ as they did in the first line of the story, or something along the lines of ‘narrowly avoided.’ ‘Journalists’ can’t be bothered with the picky details of grammar and sentence structure these days.. ;-) Don’t get me started.. ;-)