Asteroid 2023 DW was just discovered in February. But NASA says it is tracking it urgently to learn about its orbital path, because the asteroid has “the smallest chance of impacting Earth” in 23 years.
The diameter of the asteroid is estimated to be about 50 meters – about the size of an Olympic swimmer. 271 The orbit of the Sun takes days.
NASA he says that, after a new object is first detected, it takes several weeks to reduce the uncertainties of the data and accurately predict its orbits years into the future.
How small the chance of an impact is now estimated to be, NASA puts it at “1 in 560 impacts.” Put another way, there is only a 0.18% chance of hitting Earth, or a 99.82% chance that an innocent asteroid will sweep past our planet.
Asteroid 2023 DW is currently maintained at the top of the “Risk List” by the European Space Agency – number 1,450 around Earth objects “for which a non-zero impact probability has been calculated”.
Objects of similar size have an impact on Earth
Even if an asteroid were to hit our planet, it would not be expected to create a widely cataclysmic event. Objects of similar magnitude have hit Earth before, including an impact some 50,000 years ago that left Meteor Crater in present-day Arizona.
And in 1908, the Siberian forest was devastated in the “Tunguska Event” which tore apart 800 miles of land and burned 80 million trees, leaving them in a widespread radial pattern.
Science hazard ratings
There are two impact hazard scales: the Panormi Scale, which is used to give a granular look at the potential hazards that lie around terrestrial objects, and the older Torino Scale, which uses color codes and a 0-10 rating to communicate. public danger.
NASA how Panormum Scale works:
“For convenience, the scale is logarithmic, so that, for example, the Panormitan scale indicates a value of -2) the potential impact of the detected event is only 1% so likely that the event occurring in uncertain years interspersed with uncertain events indicates a value of no importance. A single event is equal to threat and hazard of the course, and a value of +2 indicates an event that is 100 times more likely than the subject to be struck by an object at least as large before the time of the impact of the power in question.”
Asteroid 2023 DW is one of only three objects that currently have a Panorm Scale value greater than -3, listed at -2.17 on the ESA website.
On the Torino Scale, Asteroid 2023 DW is now the only object with a value of 1 — a designation that applies to an “exercise” event in which a near-Earth transit is “predicted to pose no unusual level of risk.”
On the color coded scale of the paper, 1 is green. Objects in that category, NASA says, further observations will “likely lead to a level 0 assignment,” which represents the “non-hazardous” zone.
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