Space is a dangerous place to be, and since the Earth is in space, every living thing on the planet is at risk of eventually feeling its wrath. Asteroids are the most clear and present threat that our Solar System poses to us, and you only need to look at the scars on the Earth, our moon, and other planets in our neighborhood to see exactly how real that danger is. Now, a Queen’s University Belfast researcher is warning that the Earth is definitely going to be hit, it’s just a matter of when.
The expert, Alan Fitzsimmons, points out that an event similar to that of the 1908 meteoroid explosion over the Tunguska region in Russia’s Siberia — which leveled a forest and damaged buildings but didn’t result in any human deaths — could happen again, and if it did happen over a major city, the results would be devastating.
“Astronomers find near-Earth asteroids every day and most are harmless,” Fitzsimmons reportedly said. “But it is still possible the next Tunguska would take us by surprise, and although we are much better at finding larger asteroids, that does us no good if we are not prepared to do something about them.”
It’s a fitting warning as we approach June 30th, which is observed as Astroid Day. On June 30th, researchers and former astronauts will host a live stream to answer questions from the general public which are sourced from social media. You can bet there will be plenty of talk about the potential for collisions with near-Earth objects, so if such a thing interests you, it’s a great time to get the facts straight from the experts.