World to end in next 14 years? NASA predicts 72% possibility a massive asteroid may hit Earth on THIS date

US space agency NASA, in a hypothetical exercise, has found that a potentially hazardous asteroid has a 72% chance of hitting the Earth and we may not be adequately prepared to prevent it.

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'The world will end in 2012'; well this conspiracy theory lived among the people for many years. People around the world were left terrified when a Hollywood movie title 2012  was released and showcased how the apocalypse will swallow the Earth and humanity will be wiped out. Now, let's fast & forward to 2024, US space agency NASA, in a hypothetical exercise, has found that a potentially hazardous asteroid has a 72% chance of hitting the Earth and we may not be adequately prepared to prevent it.

Will the world end in 14 years?

NASA released a summary on Thursday of the fifth biennial Planetary Defense Interagency Tabletop Exercise. NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office, in partnership with FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) and with the assistance of the U.S. Department of State Office of Space Affairs, convened the tabletop exercise to inform and assess our ability as a nation to respond effectively to the threat of a potentially hazardous asteroid or comet.

Although there are no known significant asteroid impact threats for the foreseeable future, hypothetical exercises provide valuable insights by exploring the risks, response options, and opportunities for collaboration posed by varying scenarios, from minor regional damage with little warning to potential global catastrophes predicted years or even decades in the future.

“The uncertainties in these initial conditions for the exercise allowed participants to consider a particularly challenging set of circumstances,” said Lindley Johnson, planetary defense officer emeritus NASA Headquarters in Washington as quoted in its release. "A large asteroid impact is potentially the only natural disaster humanity has the technology to predict years in advance and take action to prevent," Lindley added

During the exercise, participants considered potential national and global responses to a hypothetical scenario in which a never-before-detected asteroid was identified that had, according to initial calculations, a 72% chance of hitting Earth in approximately 14 years. The preliminary observations described in the exercise, however, were not sufficient to precisely determine the asteroid’s size, composition, and long-term trajectory. To complicate this year’s hypothetical scenario, essential follow-up observations would have to be delayed for at least seven months – a critical loss of time – as the asteroid passed behind the Sun as seen from Earth’s vantage point in space.

As per a separate report,  observers believe its diameter could be anywhere from 80-800 meters (262-2624 feet) wide. To be precise, “72% chance of Earth impact on 12 July 2038 (14.25 years warning time).”

What is NASA is doing to prevent it?

This exercise was the first to use data from NASA’s DART (Double Asteroid Redirection Test) mission, the first in-space demonstration of a technology for defending Earth against potential asteroid impacts. The DART spacecraft, which impacted the asteroid moonlet Dimorphos on Sept. 26, 2022, confirmed a kinetic impactor could change the trajectory of an asteroid. Applying this or any type of technology to an actual impact threat would require many years of advance planning.

To help ensure humanity will have the time needed to evaluate and respond to a potentially hazardous asteroid or comet, NASA continues the development of its NEO Surveyor (Near-Earth Object Surveyor), an infrared space telescope designed specifically to expedite our ability to discover and characterize most of the potentially hazardous near-Earth objects many years before they could become an impact threat. The agency’s NEO Surveyor’s proposed launch date is set for June 2028.