Humans are probably safe from a catastrophic asteroid strike -- for now
Nypost.com - Wed 12 Jun 15:14 GMT

If you ever clean out the gutters on your roof, take note: The dirt you’re tossing may have come from outer space. The new book “Cosmic Impact: Understanding the Threat to Earth from Asteroids and …

Humans are probably safe from a catastrophic asteroid strike -- for now

  The new book “Cosmic Impact: Understanding the Threat to Earth from Asteroids and Comets,” by Andrew May (Icon Books), gives an overview of the potential dangers we may one day face from near-Earth objects (NEOs), noting that on a smaller scale, items falling to Earth from space is a daily occurrence.

  The Torino Scale considers the size of NEOs and the chances of them hitting Earth over the next hundred years to place the possible danger on a scale from 1 to 10.

  Getty Images When scientists spotted a 350-meter asteroid that year, they calculated a greater than 1 percent chance it would collide with Earth in 2029.

  “When the Tunguska object entered Earth’s atmosphere, [there] was an explosion on the order of 10-15 megatons — typical of a Cold War nuclear weapon,” May writes.

  While there’s no way to defend against an object we never see coming, if an NEO should be spotted on a direct path to Earth, there are options for Earth’s defense.