It may sound like a blockbuster movie in which a city will be destroyed by the imminent approach of an asteroid, or it may seem like a real-life situation that is actually happening. But fortunately, we are talking about a simulation in which the astronomers and engineers have the mission to find a way of saving New York. That is good news. The bad news is that they have failed to save New York and everything is gone.
This week has brought around many of the world’s top minds, engineers, and astronauts to participate in the 2019 IAA Planetary Defense Conference to discuss and make a plan about a dangerous threat for our planet. We are talking about 200 people that had gathered at the Conference, including emergency response specialists, who have participated in an exercise with the purpose of getting a reaction to an existential threat.
NASA Simulation of an Asteroid Impact Shows How New York Will Be Destroyed
The simulation was like this: an asteroid will have 1% percent chance to hit Denver, Colorado in 2027. But after other measurements were made, everything changed. The probability has risen to 100% chances, and now everyone has to take action and decide to divert its course. A plan was made by the participants, according to which in 2024 they will smash the asteroid. However, the problem remained because an 80 meters wide piece of the asteroid will head straight to New York.
Unfortunately, because of the political disagreements, the plan has failed, and they confirmed on day four of the Conference that the asteroid would blast New York’s Central Park with 19km/s. In the fictional simulation, the asteroid will produce a giant fireball and five to twenty megatons of energy. In translation, that means a bigger bomb than the one at Hiroshima.
Finally, the exercise will help countries and scientists to identify issues and to prepare for an asteroid impact. In that way, more effective communications and defense could be developed by governments. The next simulation will take place in 2021, in Viena, and maybe this time a European city will be the target.
Andre Blair s is the lead editor for Advocator.ca. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) from the School of Public Health, Department of Health Administration, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Andre specializes in environmental health, but writes on a variety of issues.