By: Talat Mohsin
The asteroid in question has been identified as the 2019 MO. It was shooting towards the earth at a speed of 14.9 km/sec and NASA didn’t know about it. NASA has admitted that when it came to know about the asteroid, it was too late to do anything about it. The width of the fireball has been approximated to be 16 feet. Luckily, because of its small size, the asteroid burned up in the atmosphere before reaching the earth’s surface. According to reports, the remnants of the asteroid broke up and scattered over the Caribbean.
In its defense, NASA has established that it had detected the asteroid but not taken any measures against it as it was sure the asteroid would do no harm. The space agency admitted that the rock was first spotted when it was 500,000 km from Earth, just before it hit the earth’s surface. To quote the agency-“ this was roughly equivalent of spotting something the size of gnat from a distance of 310 miles( 500 kilometers).
The asteroid entered the Caribbean in the evening of 22 June, and generated energy worth 3 to 5 thousand TNT, according to some astronomers.
NASA has also recently reported that on Friday, an asteroid roughly equivalent to the size of Eiffel tower would shoot past the earth. In July, it was reported that a mammoth space rock flew by “uncomfortable proximity” with the earth. Scientists feared that if it collided with the earth, it would be equal to the destruction caused by a very large nuclear weapon.