Today in New Delhi, India
Oct 21, 2018-Sunday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

Gigantic space rock may hit Earth in 2102

A space rock capable of sub-continent scale devastation has about a one in 1,000 risk of colliding with Earth early next century, the highest of any known asteroid, watchers said.

india Updated: Mar 04, 2006 12:26 IST
AFP
AFP
None

A space rock capable of sub-continent scale devastation has about a one in 1,000 risk of colliding with Earth early next century, the highest of any known asteroid, watchers said.

The rock, 2004 VD17, is about 500 metres long and has a mass of nearly a billion tonnes, which if it were to impact would deliver 10,000 megatonnes of energy, equivalent to all the world’s nuclear weapons.

Spotted on November 27, 2004, VD 17 was swiftly identified as rock that potentially crossed Earth’s orbit, with a 1 in 3,000 risk of collision on May 4, 2102. Further observations and calculations have prompted the risk on that day to be upgraded to “a bit less than 1 in 1,000,” NASA Near-Earth Object expert David Morrison said.

“The risk of an impact within the next century (is) higher than that of any other known asteroid,” he said, stressing, however, that the likelihood of a hit was small. “It is nearly a century away. This should provide ample time to refine the orbit and, determine that the asteroid will miss the Earth,” he added.

First Published: Mar 04, 2006 12:26 IST