There are many very real threats that we take for granted. That's because they can seem like something straight out of science fiction, or our brains try to protect us by convincing us that these threats aren't real. If there isn't anything we can do about them, why suffer twice by worrying about them?
The idea of our civilization and planet being destroyed by a rogue asteroid sounds absolutely insane, like the plot out of a movie, but the more you think about it, the more plausible it becomes. Objects are constantly hurtling through space - what makes our planet exempt from being hit by one of these objects?
After all, the moon is covered in craters from such impacts. Sure, we may have scientists who can hopefully see these threats coming, but if there was truly an asteroid headed towards us that would lead to absolute destruction of our planet, would they even want to tell us? Or would they let us live out our last moments in a false sense of peace and security?
Sunday June 30th is Asteroid Day. While that may not be as popular or well known of a holiday as Valentines Day or Christmas, it's a holiday just the same so we might as well celebrate. The best way to celebrate would be by talking about the four asteroids that might very well destroy us. Firstly, how did this holiday come to be? It came to be because the United Nations thinks that asteroids destroying our planet are a much bigger threat than we are actually admitting to ourselves, so the holiday is one of terror. It is for us to reflect on our own fragile existence.
It's unsettling to hear that the United Nations wants us to be worried about asteroids, but it's just another enemy akin to global warming and nuclear warfare. Nothing we can't handle, right?
June 30th is the perfect day for Asteroid Day because it's the same day as the last major asteroid impact on Earth that took place in 1908, destroying hundreds of acres of Russian forest. Since we can't do much about it, let's at least talk about the four asteroids that could very well destroy us! The first is 1979 XB which has a 900-meter diameter and is moving through space at 70,000kph. The 1979 XB is the second biggest threat to Earth as far as Asteroids go.
The next asteroid is Apophis which is as big as four football fields. This asteroid is very close to our orbit, and only gets closer and closer. In 2029 it will skim right past us, but you can get a good look at it in Mid-October when it blazes by us.
The next asteroid on the list is 2010 RF12 which is speeding through space at 117,935 kph. At the end of the century it will come alarmingly close to us - specifically 40 times closer to us than the Moon. It's a small asteroid, but could still create a lot of damage. Look out for this one in 2022 when it will pass Earth.
2000 SG344 is the last asteroid on the list. It's actually a group of asteroids that might impact with earth in the next thirty or forty years. It's blazing through space at 112,000 kph, and it's bigger than 2010 RF12, but not by much. It revolves around the sun at around the same speed as Earth, so scientists get to observe it very closely. These asteroids might sound terrifying, but don't worry. If they hit us, you won't have time to be afraid.