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NASA believes civilization-threatening asteroid could collide with Earth in near future
NASA wants us to be ready for the doomsday.
NASA wants everyone to know the effects an asteroid strike could cause to our planet. The chief administrator of the space agency Jim Bridenstine believes that a civilization-threatening space rock could crash into Earth in our lifetimes. Bridenstine said this during the 2019 Planetary Defense Conference in Washington.
"We have to make sure that people understand that this is not about Hollywood, it's not about the movies. This is about ultimately protecting the only planet we know, right now, to host life and that is the planet Earth," he said.
He also noted that this scenario isn't restricted to the cinema world while speaking about the Chelyabinsk Event. The event refers to the 66 ft space rock that hurtled over Russia at 69,000 km/h injuring over 1,500 people and damaging property.
The space agency claims to have been tracking around 90 percent of the asteroids and meteorites that are 140 meters or bigger. Usually, these space rocks lose a lot of their mass while entering the atmosphere.
NASA is also working closely with SpaceX on its first-ever attempt to deflect an asteroid. The Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) will take flight placed on a Falcon 9 rocket in June 2021 from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
The main mission of DART is to crash into Didymos asteroid's small moon and deflect it off its track. However, if the mission fails, it would result in derailment of NASA's "kinetic impactor technique." If the team succeeds, the mission will provide crucial data that will inform its deployment against an actual asteroid that's approaching our planet.