Written by Aashna Nayyar, a grade 9 student
Asteroids are small rocky objects that orbit the Sun but are much smaller in size when compared to planets.
It is said that every year about 30 asteroids hit the Earth’s surface. These small asteroids do not cause any damage as when they hit the atmosphere, they create fireballs that burn up before reaching the Earth’s surface. Sometimes small fragments do make it to the surface, these are then called meteorites.
In 1555 French astrologer, physician, and seer Michel De Nostradamus published a book called ‘Les Prophéties’. It is a book filled with predictions for the future.
In his predictions for 2021, Nostradamus wrote “In the sky, one sees the fire and a long trail of sparks” which can indicate an asteroid hitting Earth. This prediction did come true as according to CNEOS (Central for Near-Earth Object Studies) on January 6th 5 asteroids are approaching Earth 2 of them bigger than the Eiffel Tower (324 Meters)!
Three of these asteroids, 2021 AC (73.5 meters at 50,652 km per hour), 2021 AJ (19.5 meters at 45,648 km per hour), and 2018 KP1 (41 meters at 15,984 km per hour) are not very big in size and do not hold any major threat.
The other two asteroids the 2016 CO247 and 2008 AF4 are larger than the Eiffel tower at 324 meters tall travelling at a speed of 60,228 km per hour and 495 meters tall and travelling at the speed of 39,564 km per hour respectively. If these two asteroids were to hit the earth the impact would be similar to that of a nuclear bomb explosion. A few days before these, on January 3rd a 220-meter asteroid flew past Earth too.
While the thought of these huge asteroids heading towards Earth might seem scary, NASA has said none of these asteroids pose a threat so we don’t have to worry about asteroids hitting our planet for now.
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