Scientists involved in a new study suggest that an asteroid named 1999 RQ36 could slam into planet Earth by the year 2182. The potential impacts from the large asteroid could affect the planet until 2200.
According to Space, scientists have concluded that 1999 RQ36, which is 1,837 feet (560 meters) across, has a 1 in 1,000 chance of hitting planet Earth in 2182. The impacts of the asteroid would affect Earth for the next 18 years until 2200.
Study co-author María Eugenia Sansaturio of the Universidad de Valladolid in Spain explained that it would have to be deflected before the year 2060 because the odds of impact become greater after 2162 and makes it much more difficult to deflect, reports Sify.
“If this object had been discovered after 2080, the deflection would require a technology that is not currently available. Therefore, this example suggests that impact monitoring, which up to date does not cover more than 80 or 100 years, may need to encompass more than one century.”
However, due to gravitational forces and the Yarkovsky effect, which is thermal radiation from sunlight hitting on one side of the asteroid, identifying the orbital path of 1999 RQ36 is difficult. The theory was founded by Russian engineer I.O. Yarkovsky in 1900.