NASA scientists have concluded that even a nuclear bomb wouldn't be able to stop a giant asteroid from destroying a huge chunk of earth.
In a simulated exercise, US and European scientists were told they had six months to come up with a lifesaving plan to stop a massive rock smashing into earth that had been spotted 35 million miles away.
The study was conducted over the course of four days, from April 26 through April 29, and astronomers used radar systems, data imaging and other technologies like the world's largest telescope.
Scientists determined that six months is not enough time to prepare a spacecraft to smash into the asteroid and that a nuclear bomb - like in the film Armageddon - would not take the monster space rock down.
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An asteroid with the force of a massive nuclear bomb could destroy a huge chunk of Europe if it fell to earth, but a new simulation shows we could do nothing to stop it. NASA conducted a tabletop exercise last week to better understand our in-space prevention against potential space rocks that threaten our existence
The exercise, called 'Space Mission Options for the Hypothetical Asteroid Impact Scenario,' involved nine NASA scientists who spent four days looking at how such an event would unfold unfold over the course of six months as if it were a real world emergency.
Day ONE of simulation - April 19, 2021:
The asteroid - named 2021PDC - was discovered by the near-Earth object survey project, operated by the University of Hawaii for NASA's Planetary Defense Program.
The simulated asteroid was found to be 35 million miles away and at this time it had just a five percent chance of impacting Earth on October 20.
Day TWO of simulation - May 2, 2021:
Astronomers analyzed data they gathered to refine 2021PDC's orbit and impact probability.
The team used image data collected in 2014 of the asteroid's previous close approach to Earth.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
It took scientists three months to determined the asteroid had a 100% probability of its expected impact region, which fell within Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Slovenia, and Croatia.
This data allowed astronomers to reduce orbit uncertainties and conclude the simulated asteroid had a 100 percent probability of hitting Earth in Europe or northern Africa.
And this is when the team quickly went to work on how to prevent 2021PDC from impacting Earth.
Space mission designers looked to disrupt the asteroid before impact, but concluded the short amount of time 'did not allow a credible space mission to be undertaken, given the current state of technology,' participants said.
Scientists also proposed nuking the asteroid, which would see as the obvious attack to many, but the team found hidden