NASA: The Only Thing Stopping a City-Destroying Asteroid Is Blind Luck

So you know how we all kind of thought that our odds of getting destroyed by an asteroid were remarkably low? Yeah, that was wrong. According to new research, the odds of a large-scale asteroid impact are actually three to ten times higher than we thought. And the only thing stopping total and utter destruction? Sheer, … » 4/18/14 1:00pm Friday 1:00pm

This Ancient Asteroid Strike Was More Insane Than We Realized

Around 3.26 billion years ago — long before the dinosaurs — a massive asteroid measuring nearly 36 miles (58 km) across smashed into the Earth. Geologists have now reconstructed this cataclysmic event, and it was far, far bigger than we thought. Here's how things went down on that fateful day. » 4/10/14 5:19pm 4/10/14 5:19pm

The Naked Metal Core of a Dead Planet Is Circling the Sun

You know about those plans to visit an asteroid in the next few years? Well, a select group of astronauts would like to sweeten the deal. Why visit a regular asteroid, when there's a planet's solid metal floating up there and it's likely magnetic? » 12/26/13 6:30pm 12/26/13 6:30pm

Watch a Huge, Newly Discovered Asteroid Almost Graze Earth

This beautiful tracking video shows Asteroid 2013 XY8 buzzing our planet on Tuesday night. It's estimated to be up to 230 feet across, more than three times the size of the Chelyabinsk asteroid that caused havoc earlier this year. And we only discovered it four days ago. This could've gotten hairy. » 12/11/13 1:20pm 12/11/13 1:20pm

Risk of asteroid hitting Earth is ten times higher than we thought

This is frightening. Nature just published a study by astronomers who have reanalyzed and recalculated the estimate of asteroids that could hit Earth and it's a lot worse than we thought. Ten times worse. » 11/06/13 7:56pm 11/06/13 7:56pm

Japan Just Successfully Tested Its Asteroid-Shattering Space Cannon

You have to crawl before you can walk—be you a baby or an asteroid-blasting space cannon. Now, after a successful test-fire here on Earth, Japan's specially made cannon for its Hayabusa 2 spacecraft is ready to take its first, real steps in outer space. » 10/24/13 10:26am 10/24/13 10:26am

The Rosetta Spacecraft Is Humanity's First Asteroid Lander

While NASA's asteroid-capturing mission remains grounded from a lack of Congressional funding, a similar and equally ambitious ESA program is nearing fruition. In the coming months, the Rosetta spacecraft and its integrated Philae probe will become the first manmade objects to not only orbit an asteroid but land on it… » 10/14/13 11:30am 10/14/13 11:30am

NASA Resurrects a Dead Satellite to Hunt Asteroids

For nearly three years, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite was one of our most potent tools in the search for asteroids, discovering 33,500 of them (more than a dozen of which are potential impact threats) before being placed into hibernation in 2011. But with a new-found interest in asteroid… » 8/22/13 12:07pm 8/22/13 12:07pm

Researchers Identify 12 Asteroids Close Enough for Space Mining

Common sense would suggest that humans would want to do everything possible to discourage the asteroids hurdling through solar system from heading towards Earth. But in the too-futuristic era of space rock mining that's just not the case anymore. » 8/12/13 1:25pm 8/12/13 1:25pm

Watch Bill Nye Explain How We Could Stop an Asteroid with Laser Bees

Because Bill Nye explains the world better than even experiencing it yourself, here's our childhood maestro of science explaining how we could possibly stop an asteroid from destroying Earth. Giant bombs, huge rockets and even freaking lasers probably can't stop it. And even if they could stop it, we might not be able… » 7/23/13 9:30pm 7/23/13 9:30pm

White House: NASA's Next Big Mission Will Be to Capture an Asteroid

There have been rumors about NASA's next major project ever since Senator Bill Nelson of Florida mentioned some jazz about wrangling an asteroid. Now a White House official has confirmed the plans to NBC, explaining the goal is to get samples within the decade, and then think about Mars. » 4/06/13 3:20pm 4/06/13 3:20pm

Meteor Strike: The Complete Story of Russia's Cosmic Fireball

Thanks to the crazy prevalence of dash-cams in Russia, we got an amazing, multi-viewpoint look at last month's monster meteor strike just hours after it happened. But there's more to see than just the flashes in the sky. PBS's Nova dug in deep to figure out the details of the incident, and the disaster it could have… » 3/30/13 9:00pm 3/30/13 9:00pm

Future Asteroids Could Be Deflected With Nothing But Space-Graffiti

Our planet's recent close call with one asteroid, and direct visit from another has definitely made it seem important to consider how to avoid the pesky things in the future. One solution is to direct the Sun's power into pulverizing lasers, but another option just involves covering incoming rocks with spray paint.… » 2/23/13 4:00pm 2/23/13 4:00pm