NASA: Due For Extinction Event

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Originally Posted By: KrisZ
Do some of you even realize what exactly we are discussing here, energy wise? It all looks easy and doable in Hollywood movies, but in real life, deflecting an asteroid is nearly impossible. We are talking here about objects traveling at about 40,000 MPH with the kinetic energy at impact ranging from 4 megatons for the little guys to 46,000 megatons and this is at impact, in space these things have a much higher kinetic energy because they would not have been slowed down by the atmosphere. And don't tell me we will use the freaking lasers.
You don't actually have to destroy it, all you have to do is give it a nudge. Just flying a space ship next to it might be enough of a gravitational pull to change its orbit just a little bit so that it misses. The key is to find them early enough so you can send the probe. So far they think they've found over 90% of them.
 
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The greater this distance out, the less has to be done. It's not different from high altitude bombing. 1mm from that height can mean being a mile off down below. At millions of miles, moving an asteroid just a "blunt hair" will have is soaring by without it causing harm.
 

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Originally Posted By: fdcg27
I find your assertion of not having seen a planetary killer in 60 million years a little silly in that it's happened before and it'll happen again
Statistics just isn't your thing..that's OK.
 

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Originally Posted By: KrisZ
Do some of you even realize what exactly we are discussing here, energy wise? It all looks easy and doable in Hollywood movies, but in real life, deflecting an asteroid is nearly impossible. We are talking here about objects traveling at about 40,000 MPH with the kinetic energy at impact ranging from 4 megatons for the little guys to 46,000 megatons and this is at impact, in space these things have a much higher kinetic energy because they would not have been slowed down by the atmosphere. And don't tell me we will use the freaking lasers.
Not just bombs, there are many ways to skin an asteroid... smile Even a small pulse thruster might nudge it just enough... You may not even want to use a bomb, which could risk making one big impact into a series of smaller ones... They only skeptical aside I'll throw in is that I thought that asteroids and comets were once more common in our solar system, like the one that hit the Yucatan Peninsula 65 million years ago, but they are less common now due to attrition and planets soaking them up...
 
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There is a pretty good possibility that a lot of the asteroids that used to fly around are now permanently stationed in the belt between us and Mars. Earth being such a small target certainly hells. If that team that hit Jupiter would have come to Earth, it likely would have missed us entirely.
 
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Originally Posted By: Al
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
I find your assertion of not having seen a planetary killer in 60 million years a little silly in that it's happened before and it'll happen again
Statistics just isn't your thing..that's OK.
Celestial mechanics just aren't your thing and that's okay as well. There are hundreds of massive objects out there with earth crossing orbits. If the object and our planet happen to be at the same point in their orbits at the same time, you then have a planetary killer. These events are not nearly as common as they were in the early solar system, since the planets absorbed most of these objects and the massive gravity wells of Saturn and Jupiter cast many of them out of the system entirely, but there are still quite a few objects to be concerned about. Sixty million years is but a blink of an eye in the life of our system and by sixty million years ago, most of the rogue objects had either been absorbed by planetary or solar impact or cast out forever courtesy of the massive planets.
 
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Originally Posted By: surfstar
Originally Posted By: Ihatetochangeoil
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Those who laugh at this expect us to believe we came from amoebas; or, goo to you by way of the zoo. And I guess the title of this thread could be "Chicken Little, The Sky is Falling" 10th grade version.
I laugh at that because there is no proof for your beliefs. Which God? Yours? Also, how convenient. There are hundreds and thousands of Religions, current and many long dead and gone or "evolved" ones. How do you know that you chose the right one? If you are so sure that your one belief, is the true one - then you are an Atheist against ALL other religions. So that makes you closer to a non-believer, than a believer.
That is why the have to "have faith" and "Believe" there are two books, the bible, (and many of it's rewrites) and a comic book of spider man... The bible proves God exists, the comic also proves Spider man exists.
 

Al

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Originally Posted By: fdcg27
Celestial mechanics just aren't your thing and that's okay as well. but there are still quite a few objects to be concerned about. Sixty million years is but a blink of an eye in the life of our system
I can assure I have read more about cosmology than you...but this is the internets so who knows. . 60 million years is 2.5 million generations. the odds of an extinction due to an asteroid in the next 30 years are one in 2 million. Don't wait up for it.
 
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Originally Posted By: Al
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
Celestial mechanics just aren't your thing and that's okay as well. but there are still quite a few objects to be concerned about. Sixty million years is but a blink of an eye in the life of our system
I can assure I have read more about cosmology than you...but this is the internets so who knows. . 60 million years is 2.5 million generations. the odds of an extinction due to an asteroid in the next 30 years are one in 2 million. Don't wait up for it.
You can assume that you've read more about cosmology than have I. If this is the case, you should be well aware that the orbits of the objects in the asteroid belt are easily perturbed by a variety of causes. Since you claim knowledge of statistics and probability theory, you should also be aware that you cannot lay odds on what are essentially random events based upon a very small sample size. We could just as easily be looking at a fast moving and massive object on an interception course a decade from now as 100 million years from now. There is no valid way of determining the likelihood of such an event.
 
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Originally Posted By: fdcg27
Originally Posted By: Al
Originally Posted By: fdcg27
Celestial mechanics just aren't your thing and that's okay as well. but there are still quite a few objects to be concerned about. Sixty million years is but a blink of an eye in the life of our system
I can assure I have read more about cosmology than you...but this is the internets so who knows. . 60 million years is 2.5 million generations. the odds of an extinction due to an asteroid in the next 30 years are one in 2 million. Don't wait up for it.
You can assume that you've read more about cosmology than have I. If this is the case, you should be well aware that the orbits of the objects in the asteroid belt are easily perturbed by a variety of causes. Since you claim knowledge of statistics and probability theory, you should also be aware that you cannot lay odds on what are essentially random events based upon a very small sample size. We could just as easily be looking at a fast moving and massive object on an interception course a decade from now as 100 million years from now. There is no valid way of determining the likelihood of such an event.
There's a big difference between the possibility of something happening and the potential of something happening. It's possible something could happen tomorrow, but not probable based on previous experience and the fact that an estimated 90%+ have been found and are not likely to hit the earth.
 

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Originally Posted By: Wolf359
There's a big difference between the possibility of something happening and the potential of something happening. It's possible something could happen tomorrow, but not probable based on previous experience and the fact that an estimated 90%+ have been found and are not likely to hit the earth.
Thank you. According to the media we have near misses every year which is absolutely intentionally misleading.
 
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