Of us checking the skies for Santa Claus this Christmas Eve could perchance presumably even be attempting out for one thing else: An asteroid the dimensions of a skyscraper.

Named 2016 TR54, this asteroid has an estimated diameter between 100 meters and 230 meters, in accordance with NASA’s asteroid tracker. On the greatest estimate, that is expounded in size to just a few skyscrapers, equivalent to Tel Aviv’s Azrieli Towers (238 meters), or spherical 64 Christmas trees (going by essentially the most realistic size of Christmas trees at 12 toes, in accordance with Christmascentral.com).

The asteroid is determined to bound by the planet on December 24, Christmas Eve, at a distance of spherical 6.5 million kilometers a long way flung from Earth. For comparison, the gap between the Earth and the Moon is spherical 384,000 kilometers. As such, with out a telescope, this could perchance presumably be exhausting to space this asteroid in the sky. 

It also formula Armageddon obtained’t be coming this vacation season. This traces up with earlier predictions by NASA, which estimated that Earth is freed from menace of an asteroid impact for the next century.

This is stunning, as an asteroid impact is arguably one in all the worst imaginable pure disasters that could perchance presumably occur, and one humanity has minute to no defense in opposition to.

 An asteroid is seen crashing into the Earth in this artistic rendering of an asteroid impact. (credit: PIXABAY) An asteroid is viewed crashing into the Earth on this artistic rendering of an asteroid impact. (credit: PIXABAY)

The closing known considerable asteroid impact modified into on February 15, 2013, when an asteroid exploded in the air above Chelyabinsk, Russia. This asteroid modified into 17 meters broad, and whereas it did no longer outcome in any casualties, the shock wave from the explosion shattered home windows in six a variety of Russian cities and prompted 1,500 other folks to require medical consideration.

That modified into factual 17 meters, a long way smaller than 2016 TR54. 

In accordance to NASA, any asteroid 140 meters in diameter or bigger could perchance have a potentially catastrophic impact if it crashed into Earth.

The detrimental nature of asteroids, even tiny ones, is one thing well-known to consultants, with declare companies one day of the arena monitoring for seemingly catastrophic impacts, as successfully as researching seemingly formula of battling them.

One formula for presumably stopping the impact of an asteroid is by the use of deflection, which could perchance well imply launching one thing to a minute bit alter an asteroid’s path. Essentially the most notorious of those efforts is the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) Mission, the outcome of efforts by NASA and the Utilized Physics Laboratory.

In layman’s terms, it formula punching an asteroid with a rocket with ample bound to alternate its course by a fraction of a p.c.

The DART Mission is humanity’s first accurate strive at testing a defense in opposition to an asteroid impact and is determined to be examined later this week when the spacecraft is launched in direction of the Didymos binary asteroid machine

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