In a recent NASA simulation, scientists had six months to stop a hypothetical asteroid from hitting Earth, and they failed. That wasn't enough time.
Space agencies participated in a week-long NASA exercise in which they tried - and failed - to stop a fictitious asteroid from hitting Europe.
Comet Neowise has dazzled stargazers this week, but its surprise appearance highlights one of Earth’s greatest vulnerabilities. NASA discovered the comet hurtling towards Earth three months ago, but only because one of its space telescopes got lucky. Our planet is woefully unprepared for the enormous, deadly rocks that hurtle towards […]
The massive asteroid that struck present-day Mexico 66 million years ago contributed to the extinction of the dinosaurs and 75% of life on Earth. A new study shows that the asteroid hit at “one of the deadliest possible angles.” Because it struck at a 60-degree angle, the impact released billions […]
A massive asteroid struck present-day Mexico 66 million years ago. The impact contributed to the extinction of the dinosaurs and 75% of life on Earth at the time. The asteroid crash spurred a mile-high tsunami, wildfires, and the release of billions of tons of sulphur that blotted out the sun […]
NASA plans to launch an infrared telescope into space to detect potentially deadly near-Earth objects (NEOs). It’s “a breakthrough decades in the making,” one asteroid researcher said. The announcement is a step forward after NASA failed to fund a similar telescope, NEOCam, in 2017. Space agencies have limited ability to […]
An amateur astronomer accidentally captured video of a massive collision on Jupiter in August. A new analysis of that video reveals that the flash came from a 450-ton meteor that hit the planet, triggering an explosion with as much energy as 240,000 tons of TNT. Seeing such flashes on Jupiter […]
In a new book, writer Bryan Walsh describes strategies that might keep people alive after a disaster like an asteroid impact, supervolcano eruption, or nuclear war. Walsh suggests that because mushrooms, rats, and some insects can thrive without sunlight, humans could start farming them with the remains of dead trees […]
A massive asteroid struck present-day Mexico 66 million years ago. The impact contributed to the extinction of the dinosaurs and 75% of life on Earth at the time. By analysing rocks from deep in the asteroid crater, scientists were able to reconstruct what happened during the day after the impact. […]
Earth’s moon may be hiding a giant metallic lump beneath an impact crater called the South Pole-Aitken Basin. The feature may be the core of an asteroid or planetary chunk, or possibly a frozen ocean of magma. The mysterious object is about five times the size of the Big Island […]
Asteroid impacts on Earth are hidden by erosion, but the moon keeps a pristine record of them. Researchers dated 111 larger craters on the moon to reconstruct Earth’s impact history over the past 1 billion years. The team discovered that larger asteroid strikes were 2.6 times more common in the […]
Small asteroids can strike Earth with the force of many nuclear weapons and destroy entire cities. A small fraction of such asteroids is estimated to have been found, but NASA is supposed to find 90% of them by 2020. Retired astronaut Rusty Schweickart says a relatively inexpensive space telescope, called […]
Greenland is hiding an explosive secret under its thick ice sheet. In 2015, researchers created a new map of the continent’s bedrock, which is normally obscured by thousands of metres of ice. When an international team of scientists studied that map, they found a 25km wide, bowl-like depression – it […]
Scientists who study asteroids often say that Earth is drifting through a cosmic shooting gallery. Some angry space rocks, like the recent Chelyabinsk meteorite that exploded over Russia, are big enough to shatter windows and crumble walls. Others, like the one that caused the Tunguska Event of 1908, can flatten […]