The World Asteroid Day is observed worldwide on June 30 to raise awareness about the asteroids and its hazardous impacts. And furthermost important thing is to educate the people around the world about the crisis communication actions that should be taken in the case of Near-Earth objects (NEO). Near-Earth objects include asteroids, comets, meteoroids, which cause fatal threats to Earth. According to the NASA reports, till now, 16,000 Near-Earth objects have been discovered.
What is the history of World Asteroids Day?
World Asteroids Day is celebrated in the remembrance of the Tunguska impact over Siberia, Russia which happened on June 30, 1908. It was the Earth's largest asteroid impact ever recorded so far. In December 2016, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted resolution A/RES/71/90 and designated June 30 as World Asteroid Day to mark the anniversary of the Tunguska event.
Asteroids Day was co-founded by astrophysicist and guitarist Dr. Brian May, Danica Remy, B612 President, Apollo astronaut Rusty Schweickart and filmmaker Grig Richters in 2014. Then, in 2016, a proposal was made by the Association of Space Explorers (ASE) which was endorsed by the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS). Based on the proposal, the United Nations declared World Asteroids Day on June 30 with the main objective to raise awareness on a global level about the asteroid impact hazard.
What is Tunguska Impact?
An enormous explosion occurred in the atmosphere above the Podkamennaya Tunguska River in Siberia, Russia on June 30, 1908. The estimated energy of the explosion is equivalent to the explosive force of 15 megatons of TNT which is a thousand times more powerful than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
Around 2,000 kilometers, forest areas were destroyed which flattened about 80 million trees. It is believed that the cause of the explosion was by incoming asteroids. Hence, the Tunguska event is considered as the largest asteroid impact on the Earth in recorded history.
What are Asteroids?
Asteroids are small rocky bodies that orbit around the sun. Most of the asteroids found in the asteroid belt which is nothing but the region between the orbit of Mars and Jupiter. Asteroids are leftover materials from the formation of the solar system.
The size of some asteroids can be hundreds of miles in diameter but many asteroids are as small as pebbles. Largest asteroids are in a spherical shape and mostly like a miniature planet but the majority of the asteroids are in irregular shapes. There are several hundred thousand asteroids existing in the solar system which are not yet discovered. Based on the composition, asteroids are classified into three groups namely:
- C-type asteroids
- S-type asteroids
- M-type asteroids
Recent news about asteroids
The biggest asteroids that passed relatively close to Earth on April 29, 2020. Asteroid (52768) 1998 OR2 passed at a distance of 4 million miles (6 million km), which is about 16 times the Earth-moon distance. Astronomers at Puerto Rico's Arecibo Observatory observed the asteroid beginning on April 8, as it flew 19,461 miles per hour through space. In addition, the size of the asteroid is 140 meters and mostly spherical. The Center for Near-Earth Objects defines the Asteroid 1998 OR2 as a potentially hazardous asteroid.
What is NASA’s DART Mission?
DART - Double Asteroid Redirection Test
DART mission is a planned space probe that will demonstrate the kinetic effects of crashing an impactor spacecraft into an asteroid moon for planetary defense purposes. The mission is headed by the US Space Agency, NASA. The mission is to stop asteroids hitting Earth
Follow the quotes and wishes given below. Share on social media World Asteroid Day Quotes!
World Asteroid Day Quotes:
If the Earth gets hit by an asteroid, it's game over. It's control-alt-delete for civilization. – Bill Nye
Noise proves nothing. Often a hen who has merely laid an egg cackles as if she laid an asteroid. – Mark Twain
It was not an asteroid or comet, because it would have killed everything. – Robert T. Bakker
“A hybrid human-robot mission to investigate an asteroid affords a realistic opportunity to demonstrate new technological capabilities for future deep-space travel and to test spacecraft for long-duration spaceflight.” Buzz Aldrin
I despise the Lottery. There's less chance of you becoming a millionaire than there is of getting hit on the head by a passing asteroid. – Brian May
“We should really care about asteroids because there are too many out there!” Pedro Duque
“Sixty-six million years ago, a ten-kilometer space rock plumeted into the Ucitan Peninsula, causing a prolonged nuclear winter, killing off the Dinosaurs. Today, such a collision would likely end
Sooner or later the space program will need to save us by detecting and deflecting an incoming asteroid. – Nathan Myhrvold
“The idea is to raise awareness of, not only the dangers of asteroids, but also the fact that we have solutions in hand to find dangerous asteroids and do something
“Asteroid Day has two main goals, to get people to realize, number one: the issue of asteroids hitting the earth is important, and number two: that we, using our brains,
Interesting Facts about Asteroids
- Ceres was the first asteroid which was discovered by Giuseppe Piazzi in 1801
- The word asteroid is first coined by Astronomer William Herschel in 1802 which means ‘Star-like’
- Based on the theories asteroids are planetesimals which is the building blocks of planets that never come under as one of the eight planets in our solar system
- According to scientists, 65 million years ago, the impacts of asteroids caused the extinction of the dinosaurs and affected all life on Earth
- Currently, more than 600,000 asteroids are discovered in the solar system
- Asteroids are rich in metals and water
- Some asteroids have own moon