December 3, 2023
Cientistas descobrem asteroide ‘assassino de planetas’

Scientists discover asteroid “killer planet”

A giant asteroid can cross the path of the Earth, warned And a group of American scientists added that what they discovered recently is the largest discovery in more than eight years. The team, called 2022 AP7, revealed the orb’s width is 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles), adding that its potential impact would be felt across multiple continents.

“So far, we have found two large asteroids near Earth that are about one kilometer in diameter, a size we call ‘planet killers’, Scott Sheppard, an astronomer at the Earth and Planetary Laboratory at the Carnegie Institution for Science and lead author of a paper describing the discovery, said in a press release. But only 2022 AP7 has an orbit that makes it dangerous for Earth, according to scientists.

The “planet killer” asteroid was hidden somewhere between Earth and Venus, making it difficult to detect. Astronomers need to look toward the Sun to study this region, and the latest orbiting telescopes like James Webb or Hubble cannot be used for such studies, because the sun’s glare would burn their sensitive optics.

“About 25 asteroids with orbits completely within the Earth’s orbit have been discovered so far due to the difficulty of observing near the brightness of the sun.” Shepherd explained. In this particular case, scientists made the discovery using the Dark Energy camera on the 4-meter Victor M. Blanco Telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile.

While the inner solar system is still largely a terra of unknowns when it comes to asteroids, scientists believe this region contains few potential dangers to Earth.

There may be a few [asteróides próximos à Terra] of similar sizes to find them”, Most of them will likely have orbits that won’t put them on a collision course with Earth, Sheppard said. It is also unclear when, if and when, 2022 AP7 could pose an acute hazard to Earth.

However, according to Now, astronomers are already observing as many as 2,200 potentially dangerous asteroids more than one kilometer wide. These space rocks are potentially so dangerous to the entire planet, that even a 50-meter-wide asteroid could destroy an entire city like London if it exploded in its center, the media reports.

An asteroid called Apophis orbits dangerously close to Earth. In 2020, scientists warned that it could hit the planet in 2068. Later that same year, the American Astronomical Society’s Division of Planetary Sciences said that 370-meter space rocks could enter the orbits of some of our communications satellites. As it happened early. 2029.