There are still 10 years left for the estimated date. But for 15 years ago, when I just discovered the first asteroid with possibilities of shock on our planet, many notes have passed in hundreds of media and millions of calculations on the likelihood of impact.
Recently NASA has revealed new and dangerous details of the approach of Apophis (apophis) nicknamed by some media as the "God of chaos". It is a huge asteroid three blocks and a half on which we have already dedicated some news in this blog.
To make a summary on the subject, we tell you that Asteroride Apophis was discovered in 2004 by astronomers Roy A. Tucker, David J. Tholen, and Fabrizio Bernardi. Shortly after its discovery, trajectory calculation systems around the world calculated the date of maximum proximity to the earth, coinciding that the event will happen on April 13, 2029. Apophis will shine like a star that can be seen from all over the world with the naked eye.
Since then, the looks of science posed in this astronomical event and much has been said about the date of maximum proximity and about the minimum chances of collision of this body with our planet. For example, in the year 2018, a 13-year-old teenager corrected NASA's calculations on the possible impact of the Asteroid Apophis and in 2012 Russian scientists analyzed the possibility of installing a radio beacon on the gigantic asteroid.
Numerous media, awarded the end of the world to this great asteroid for more than 15 years. And even if there are at least 10 years left before the celestial curer gets close enough to our planet to be attracted by the gravitational force of the Earth, new news, questions and data will emerge that will be of vital importance to avoid one of the greatest Natural catastrophes in the history of mankind.
Among the most recent findings, NASA has published that Apophis is about 340 meters in diameter and will pass to the unusual distance of about 30,000 kilometers of our planet. A measure close enough to generate doubts to scientists, but certainly certain that our gravity does not attract it. That is, if the asteroid visits us from that distance, its passage through space will become a majestic spectacle that can be seen by the naked eye by humanity.
The problem is that a minimum calculation error in the trajectory, could mean that the proximity to the earth is much smaller. And in that case, the danger of impact can be considerable.
Sergei Naroyenkov, principal investigator of the Institute of Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences, believes that the orbit of Apophis can vary after 2029, which could change the degree of danger it poses to the planet in the future. "In 2029, Apophis will travel 38,000 kilometers from Earth. The last data that we have at our disposal was obtained in 2015. After 2029 we will see how significantly its orbit has changed after approaching the Earth. Then it will be possible to make predictions about the future of the asteroid, "Naroyenkov said.
Asteroids can be a real threat to Earth.
Russia's interest is motivated by events that occurred in the present in its territory. The most catastrophic of all was that of Tunguska occurred in the year 1908, although recently they have suffered other attacks of celestial bodies, such as the one occurred in February 2015, where a meteorite hit the center of Russia leaving more than 500 injured. Fortunately in this case there were no fatal victims.
After the initiative taken by Russia to thoroughly investigate the asteroids by the latent threat that these represent to the Earth other countries began to develop a strategy against possible impacts of these rocky bodies. The difficult objective, as recognized by the group of scientists leading the project, is known weeks after it was reported that an object of 40 meters in diameter could hit our planet on September 9 at five and three minutes of the morning.
The information was released in January by the Russian space agency, Roscomos. "We began to develop a program to investigate and counteract the threats coming from space: asteroids and fragments of cosmic rocks," he wrote on Twitter.
A group of scientists from NASA recently joined this initiative and is working on a strategy to defend the Earth from possible impacts of asteroids on its surface, according to a study that was presented in April 2019 at the meeting of the American Physical Society.
And in case the threats of asteroids circulating in our Solar System were few, astronomers have recently discovered interstellar rock visitors, such as the gigantic Oumuamua, an asteroid discovered in the year 2017 that comes, according to calculations and observations made by scientists, of a neighboring Solar System. Considering these new variables, it seems to be really necessary to focus the effort in carrying out studies and learn more about these celestial bodies, in order to be able to predict with greater accuracy their proximity and to be able to take action in advance before a latent threat.