Small asteroid disintegrates over Southern Africa

Thursday, 07 Jun, 2018

Since it is a tiny asteroid of just 2 metres it would have burnt completely when enters the Earth Atmosphere. NASA officials named it as Asteroid 2018 LA and said that it was actually meant to hit the Earth when its trajectory is analysed and the hitting speed is around 60,000 km/hr or 38,000 miles per hour approximately. The officer added, "The modern facilities, capabilities, and the models for impact prediction have potential to predict the impact of larger objects".

"The discovery of the asteroid in 2018, LA became the third case, when the asteroid was discovered on the swing", - said the expert of the center of studies near-earth objects Paul Chodas.

Think again. Humanity has only detected an asteroid on a collision course a handful of times - and only one other of these sightings took place with ample time to spare before it hit us.

Preliminary data suggests that asteroid 2018 LA entered the atmosphere at roughly 15 kilometres/second (or 54,000 km/h) and released energy equivalent to a half-kiloton of TNT. According to the space agency, the asteroid was flying at an incredible 38,000MPH when it hit the atmosphere. When it reached Earth, the asteroid was traveling incredibly fast, at 10 miles per second. "It is also only the second time that the impact location was predicted well ahead of the event itself".

Scientists were able to observe 2018 LA a few hours prior to impact using the ATLAS asteroid survey, an asteroid impact early warning system developed by the University of Hawaii and funded by NASA.

Astronomers need long-term data to accurately determine the trajectory of asteroids and, as 2018 LA had just been identified, they didn't have much to go on.

The video below, posted on YouTube by Barend Swanepoel, shows footage of the asteroid coming down between Ottosdal and Hartebeesfontein in South Africa.

But, also a small space object has been the one that exploded over Chelyabinsk, in Russian Federation, back in 2013, and caused a shockwave that blew thousands of windows into pieces, causing small injuries in residents. "Over 8,000 of these larger asteroids are now being tracked".

The first event of this kind was the impact of asteroid 2008 TC3, which lit up the predawn sky above Northern Sudan on October 7, 2008.

A 2008 asteroid was spotted by Kowalski 19 hours in advance and measured 13 feet, or 4 meters.

After scientists at the Catalina Sky Survey spotted the asteroid, they relayed their observations to scientists at the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The next has been 2014 AA, found only a couple of hours before it changed within the Atlantic Ocean on January 1, 2014.