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NASA’s spacecraft will go to Apophis, this asteroid is the biggest threat to Earth

NASA’s spacecraft will go to Apophis, this asteroid is the biggest threat to Earth
Written by Arindam
NASA’s spacecraft will go to Apophis, this asteroid is the biggest threat to Earth

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) reportedly predicted an asteroid named 2004 MN4 (currently Apophis) to hit Earth in 2029, after which the US space agency is now preparing to send its spacecraft to this asteroid. Is. In 2004, this asteroid was first observed by astronomer Fabrizio Bernard along with two of his companions. Since then, there have been many types of analysis on this asteroid. Examining the orbit of Apophis showed that it is unlikely to hit Earth until the next century, but it will still reach our planet very close in 2029, and at that time its distance will be only 32,000 kilometers.

Scientific American’s report claims that NASA scientists have eagerly proposed to send their spacecraft to this asteroid at the time of its passing in 2029. For this, the OSIRIS-REx vehicle, which is already traveling in space, has been fixed for this. Let us tell you, this vehicle was initially launched in 2016 on a mission to collect samples from another asteroid named Bennu. This vehicle is currently returning to Earth with samples from that asteroid, and will arrive in September 2023.

The report says that NASA will have to increase the budget of $ 200 million for this vehicle to continue its flight in space and to collect samples from Apophis and bring back, for which the agency is getting approval. When combined with the upcoming asteroid, it will be named OSIRIS-APEX. This vehicle will remain at Apophis for a few months. During this time it will be seen that what is the effect of gravity on the asteroid when it passes so close to the Earth. Mike Nolan of the University of Arizona, who heads the OSIRIS-REx science team, says that “the tidal force between the two could also cause some landslides, revealing some fresh material. “

It has also been told that the orbital motion of this asteroid will also be studied and it will be seen where it will go in the future, so that in the coming time it can be found out whether it will prove to be a threat to the Earth again or not. The team says that at the moment they can only guess up to the year 2116.

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Arindam

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