Extinction-Level Asteroid Would Be Impossible to Destroy
A team of physics students from the University of Leicester have been performing some interesting calculations on the feasibility of saving the planet from a meteorite doomsday.
The Journal of Special Physics Topics from the University of Leicester covered the research in full and while Hollywood might have you believe otherwise, a nuclear weapon wouldn’t actually save the planet from an impending asteroid attack. In order to destroy an asteroid of sufficient size to wreck the Earth, such a bomb would have to be 1 billion times stronger than the largest nuclear device ever detonated. While Big Ivan was a powerful dark jewel in the USSR’s Cold War era arsenal, it still only carried a 50-megaton payload.
Even if one could build a hydrogen bomb strong enough to do some damage, the asteroid would have to be detected far earlier than the weapon in the 1998 movie Armageddon. Space exploration and military services would need ample time to plan a solution. In fact, moving the asteroid away from Earth with an attached propulsion system would be a better idea. “The conclusion is very simple. Our current level of technology is simply nowhere near sufficient to protect Earth from such an asteroid by this specific means of asteroid defense, though other possible methods have been suggested that may be more feasible” the paper stated.
In the unlikely event that a major disaster were to take place from an asteroid, it might be several days before vital services are restored; be prepared by following these tips.
BEFORE AN ASTEROID ATTACK OCCURS
- Create and emergency plan that you and the members of your household are familiar with.
- Keep an emergency kit with survival items like flashlights, batteries, a radio, food, water, dusk masks and basic medical supplies that will last at least three to five days.
- If you are near the ocean or large waterways move immediately to higher ground as there may be huge Tsunami sized floods as an effect of an asteroid impact.
DURING AN ASTEROID ATTACK
- Find a safe level place to drop, cover, and hold on until the shaking stops.
- Avoid going outside whenever possible and for as long as possible.
- Take your Survival Kit with you if you do have to leave.
AFTER AN ASTEROID ATTACK
- Expect the possibility of secondary disasters (such as earthquakes, aftershocks and tsunamis).
- Report injuries or fires to the emergency services (dial 911).
- Listen to the radio or other digital or analog transmissions for advice and information.
Numerous asteroid collisions have occurred in the past. The term Apollo objects refers to a particular group of asteroids that cross Earth’s orbit and occasionally do come into contact with the planet. An asteroid around one-tenth of a mile in diameter exploded above central Siberia in 1908. The resulting blast shattered windows as far as 600 miles away. Scientists predict that asteroids ten times larger than this object strike the Earth every few hundred thousand years. Nevertheless, this particular incident has become quite famous in the popular imagination.
Many Arizona residents are familiar with the Barringer Crater, which measures 0.7 miles across. It’s 590 feet deep. Experts believe that the crater was created around 25,000 years ago by a massive meteorite. While an object of that size wouldn’t destroy the Earth, it’s still large enough to create a number of climatic problems. No one would care to see something like that strike New York or Los Angeles either.
While authorities would have several options when trying to deal with such a strike, this isn’t the sort of scenario most people prepare for. In fact, its much more common that people prepare for hurricanes, wildfires or even violent uprisings but few even consider asteroids. A survey conducted by the Red Cross revealed that only 12 percent of the country is adequately prepared for an emergency. This means at least 88 percent of Americans are not prepared for an asteroid hitting Earth. Source: NewsLi.Com