So, there’s a 1 in 45,000 chance that we’re going to get hit by the Apophis asteroid in 2036.
Apophis would pass through a “gravitational keyhole”, a precise region in space no more than about 400 meters across, that would set up a future impact on April 13, 2036. This possibility kept the asteroid at Level 1 on the Torino impact hazard scale until August 2006. It broke the record for the highest level on the Torino Scale, being, for only a short time, a level 4, before it was lowered.
I believe that’s an election year. Probably just Republican fear tactics. We’re also possibly going to be screwed by gamma ray bursts. And then there’s that whole “sun becomes 30x bigger and a thousand times brighter” thing that will turn us into briquettes. I’m in an apocalyptic mood tonight. We’re all doomed anyway. Who cares you who vote for…
Bruce Willis will probably be dead.
In all seriousness though, Apophis is going to pass by Earth in 2029 – so close that you will be able to see it with the naked eye. No binoclars or telescope required. I think about this stuff all the time. Again, seriously, who do you think would be the presidential candidate that would consider these scenarios and do something about them? I get that no candidate has that level of scientific knowledge, but is there anyone out there who would say, “Yeah, NASA (or whomever). Here’s a few billion bucks to work with. Figure out a way to destroy an asteroid or deflect a gamma ray burst.” Personally, I don’t think any candidate, D or R, even cares about this crap. I think it is very real, and very much worth considering as an issue.