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Mars might have a hole in it!

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Batman, Dec 21, 2007.

  1. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    This is a little frightening. It's not a world-ender by any means, but it does ensure we'll get another round of "what if?" specials on the Discovery Channel.

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mars could be in for an asteroid hit.
    A newly discovered hunk of space rock has a 1 in 75 chance of slamming into the Red Planet on Jan. 30, scientists said Thursday.
    “These odds are extremely unusual. We frequently work with really long odds when we track ... threatening asteroids,” said Steve Chesley, an astronomer with the Near Earth Object Program at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
    The asteroid, known as 2007 WD5, was discovered in late November and is similar in size to an object that hit remote central Siberia in 1908, unleashing energy equivalent to a 15-megaton nuclear bomb and wiping out 60 million trees.
    Scientists tracking the asteroid, currently halfway between Earth and Mars, initially put the odds of impact at 1 in 350 but increased the chances this week. Scientists expect the odds to diminish again early next month after getting new observations of the asteroid’s orbit, Chesley said.
    “We know that it’s going to fly by Mars and most likely going to miss, but there’s a possibility of an impact,” he said.
    If the asteroid does smash into Mars, it will probably hit near the equator close to where the rover Opportunity has been exploring the Martian plains since 2004. The robot is not in danger because it lies outside the impact zone. Speeding at 8 miles a second, a collision would carve a hole the size of the famed Meteor Crater in Arizona.
    In 1994, fragments of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 smacked into Jupiter, creating a series of overlapping fireballs in space. Astronomers have yet to witness an asteroid impact with another planet.
    “Unlike an Earth impact, we’re not afraid, but we’re excited,” Chesley said.
    On the Net:
    Near Earth Object Program: http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov
  2. beefncheddar

    beefncheddar Guest

    Re: Mars is gonna have a hole in it!

    Newsflash: Mars has a 74-in-75 chance of NOT getting hit by an asteroid.
  3. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    Cosmically speaking, 1-in-75 is pretty good odds that it will hit. These things are usually estimated in the 1-in-something million range.
    If you're wondering what something like this might do, here's a fun little time-waster:

  4. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member


    Will there be an earth-shattering kaboom?
  5. Captain_Kirk

    Captain_Kirk Well-Known Member

    Re: Mars is gonna have a hole in it!

    Clark: It's gotta be around here someplace. It's only the biggest goddamn hole in the world.

    Edna: Clark! Watch your language.

    Clark: Make that the second biggest.
  6. novelist_wannabe

    novelist_wannabe Well-Known Member

    Being disintegrated makes me very angry ...
  7. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    So? Earth has all sorts of a holes on it!
  8. novelist_wannabe

    novelist_wannabe Well-Known Member

    Has anyone consulted Courtney Love about this?
  9. kingcreole

    kingcreole Active Member

    "The Earth? Oh ... the Earth will be gone in a few moments."

    TRIVIA - Why did Marvin the Martian want to blow up Earth?
  10. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    No, there will be a Mars-shattering kaboom. :D
  11. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

  12. John

    John Well-Known Member

    Is that rover we put up there a few years ago still active?

    Can we get pictures of this?

    Is Jerry Bruckheimer already working on a movie about this?
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