Will The Shooting Stars Be The Next Episode Of 2020's Disasters?

An applied mathematician named Geoffrey Evatt, at the University of Manchester in England and his colleagues had been researching on where they might find the alien rocks. When Geoffrey Evatt was snowmobiling in Antarctica he spotted a black rock. It was seen so bright on the diamantine ice that even the inexperienced eye would have known it was not from this planet. It was a meteoroid. “You’ll never get over that high of finding the first one,” he stated. As he was expecting to find a meteoroid in that place according to his calculations, he wasn't surprised.

Two summers were spent snaking up and down their chosen spot netted 120 in total — matching their prediction and giving them the confidence to use their calculations (plus additional ones of fireball trajectories) to create a global tally. The results, reported online April 29 in Geology, reveal that more than 17,000 impacts occur across the globe every year.

“The punchline is that if you want to go and see these fireballs streaking across the sky, it’s best to be near the equator,” Geoffrey Evatt said.

The contrast of the dark meteorites against the white snow, and lack of terrestrial rocks on the ice, makes such meteorites comparatively effortless to find. However, the vast majority of such ice-embedded meteorites eventually slide undiscovered into the ocean.

"We're talking about objects for which, when they strike the ground, the fragments sum together to over 50g. So, typically, 50g-10kg in total. Objects bigger than this are very, very infrequent," the University of Manchester mathematician told BBC News.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine pointed to the meteorite that exploded over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk in 2013, which had “30 times the energy of the atomic bomb at Hiroshima” and injured around 1,500 people. Just 16 hours after the crash, NASA detected an even larger object that advanced the earth but did not land on it, he explained. Now the news reports that these meteoroids that could rain in the equator zones can easily destroy the land surface.

In April 2019, NASA awarded a contract to Elon Musk’s SpaceX that will see the company provide launch services for the agency’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission. The $69 million mission, anticipated to launch in 2021, will test the earth’s capability of diverting an asteroid by colliding a spacecraft with it at high speed.

Hopefully, this year we don't have to see any more of destructions than we already have. Meteoroids are not in our control to avoid them from colliding on the surface. These space rocks are seen as the pretty "shooting stars", but in reality are of serious threat to our planet Earth.

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