The end of the world, again?

Asteroid 2012 DA14 threatens the earth

The end of the world, again?Courtesy NASA
Courtesy NASA

Text Size

A little over a month ago millions of people around the world were certain, had doubts or at least a hunch that supposedly what the Mayan prophecies said, Nostradamus and Facebook, that on December 21, 2012, it was the "end of the world" or at least something was going happen on that date.

The asteroid 2012 DA14 was discovered by Spanish astronomers in February of 2012, and was calculated to fly by earth on Friday February, 15, 2013.

VIDEO: Asteroid 2012 AD14

At the beginning of last century on June 30, 1908, an asteroid hit a remote and sparsely populated area of Siberia. The phenomenon known as the Tunguska event was similar to a detonation of an atomic bomb of 30 megatons. As a point of reference let’s look at the bomb that was used by the United States on the attack of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in which that bomb had limited power not exceeding 20 kilotons, the difference between this two forces is abysmal.

Although NASA says that the chances of an impact are minimal because they have studied its path, the behavior of asteroids can be erratic and difficult to predict. There is a phenomenon known as the “Yarkovsky effect”, in which an asteroid can divert for about 100 miles from its path. If this happens with DA14 2012, it could be fatal.

In short, a very dangerous asteroid is heading towards our planet, and there is a possibility of collision with the earth. The doomsayers and the survival equipment industry have already started with their "I told you so", soon we will know if It was either a real “last call” — or just another excuse to make a party; sell t-shirts, and movie tickets.

Update February 15, 2013: At least 700 injured as meteor blasts across Russian sky, causing explosions and smashing windows.

Eduardo.Flores@sandiegored.com

SanDiegoRed en facebook