Earth — Apophis: close encounter

Earth - Apophis: close encounter

Astrologers all over the world can not stop the flight of his own observations of Apophis, an asteroid that after some time closer to a completely errant distance to the Earth.

A couple of years back the message of this approximation is very alarmed the public, but at the current time people about him actually do not remember. But remember the great spices.

For the first time terrible asteroid was discovered by South American astrologers from the public observatory "Whale Peak", which is located in Arizona. The very name says it for itself, because dubbed Apophis asteroid, and so was called specifically the ancient Greek god of destruction and darkness. This god is depicted as a tremendous serpent-destroyer which lived in the underworld, and from there try to kill the sun, while it makes a night shift. It should be noted that the choice of this name for an asteroid is fully justified and is traditional, because from the very beginning, all the heavenly bodies called the names of the old gods, and only then began to call the names of real historical characters.

Scientists have determined that the asteroid once in seven years crosses Earth orbit, with all this with every new "visit", he further decreases the distance to the planet. According to professionals, Apophis will approach to a distance of a little more than 35 thousand kilometers in April 2029 and hit the Earth it could in 2036.

A little earlier, the first in 2011, on one of the scientific conferences held in Moscow, an employee of the St. Petersburg Municipal Institute Leonid Sokolov was called even more possible date of the collision, namely 13 April 2036. At the same time, scientists have not been able to find where exactly would be the point of impact. But all the same there are certain conjectures put forward by the Director of the Institute of Astronomy of Russian Academy of Boris Shustov. According to him, asteroid may collide with the Earth in the area from the Urals, on the border of Russia, Mongolia and Kazakhstan, through the waters of the Pacific Ocean, Central American country, and the waters of the Atlantic to the coast of Africa. In addition, to accurately predict the orbit of the asteroid is not easy. The fact that there is an effect Yarkovsky essence of which lies in the existence of a small but effective force. It appears that one side asteroid emits more heat than the other. When an asteroid away from the sun, it begins to exude heat accumulated in the upper layers. So Makarov, there is a small reaction force, which acts in the opposite direction of the heat clot. Scientists do not even mean how exactly this effect can affect the trajectory of Apophis, which is actually not clear anything — neither speed nor the direction of the axis on which it spins. But exactly these characteristics are needed to determine the Yarkovsky effect.

But Russian scientists rush to reassure the public by saying that the possibility of attack is very small, it is approximately 1 in 100 tyscham. The reason for such belief of scientists in the relative safety of Apophis to the Earth lies in the fact that they were able to more accurately determine its orbit. At the same time, scientists do not exclude the fact that even in this case in 2036 will not impact this can occur fully during the following years. With all of this Russian astrologers rely on the results of research by NASA, according to which in this century is expected to about 11 collisions with the planet, with 4 of these collisions can occur before 2050.

If all the same collision of Apophis and the Earth does, the public lands in mortal danger. Despite the fact that in itself for themselves asteroid small (its diameter is about 270-320 meters) hit an object with a mass of several 10-s millions of tons of the surface of the planet at high speed (about 50 thousand kilometers per hour) may be a precursor of explosion, whose power is equal to 506 megatons. So Makarov, in the case of "contact" explosion energy can be compared to the detonation of a nuclear weapon that exists on the planet. Damaging effects of such reasons would be the explosion of nuclear weapons, in addition, that there will be no radiation.

At the same time, Russian scientists say that, according to research the possibility of death from a collision with an asteroid is about 1 in 200 tyscham.

It is worth noting that to date under the scrutiny of Russian and American scientists are more than 830 potentially unsafe asteroids, while among them there are huge in size than Apophis. Because a collision with even which of them can absolutely kill the planetoid. According to Boris Shustov to more unsafe is not so long ago discovered asteroid, which planetka may face in eight hundred years. "I am glad," just what the celestial objects of similar size occur within the boundaries of the Earth once in 10's of millions of years.

At the current time, according to scientists, there are about seven thousand celestial objects that come closer to the land, of them about one seventh of potentially unsafe. Together with those South American astrologers say that after 2029 the population of the earth will be time enough in order to slightly move Apophis from its orbit so Makarov, that he did not get in so referred to as "gravity well", in other words, a field that is located on the outskirts of and to the planet that can bring the asteroid directly at her. Because it was suggested several ways to shift a celestial object with his shaved, namely the powerful frontal impact, the change of orbit by rocket motor used as the "prime mover". In addition, you can try to change the line of motion of the asteroid by detonating a nuclear charge on its surface.

According to a leading researcher at the Institute of Astronomy of Russian Academy of Sciences Doctor of Physics and Mathematics, Alexander Bagrov, today the world's population has made more than 40 different tools to deal with various celestial objects that are hazardous planet. More discussed are two options — Russian, which involves placing a beacon on the asteroid, and South American, which implies a nuclear attack in the event of Apophis critical approach to the Earth.

In addition, there are other more notable developments. So, namely, the European Alliance plans to allocate about 4 million euros for the three-year project entitled NEO-Shield. The project will perceive the role of scientists from six countries that have a different methods of protection from potentially unsafe celestial objects. Yet a certain amount of money (about $ 1.8 million) granted by the European research institutes and enterprises related to the aerospace industry. By the way, specifically those structures intensively supported the initiative of the EU, so as he had previously funds for such research has not devoted. By the time of funding cuts coincided with the South American municipal budget for gallakticheskoy industry. So Makar, from the standpoint of theoretical developments, Europeans can feel pride in the fact that they specifically had the noble mission of saving the planet. But at the same time, the practical implementation of strategies developed this project implies.

According to the European aerospace company Astrium, the construction of a real shield against asteroids will claim significant investment funds (about 300 million euros), and such amounts are not Europeans. By the way, particularly because of lack of funds and was not brought t
o its logical end of the project of "Don Quixote", the essence of which was to send out to Hidalgo (the next scary asteroid) Satellite-ram configuration to the path of the latter.

Russian astrologers are also not far behind, but their studies for the detection of potentially unsafe celestial objects are conducted exclusively within the framework of research institutes. For example, in one of the Russian Institute, named after Makeev Rocket Center, for the time being carried out to develop 2-gallakticheskih vehicles created to deal with asteroids. Some of them — "Caissa" — is designed to make intelligence functions, namely, to assess chemical composition, structure, the path of the asteroid. Another — "Trap" — a shock device on board which is several nuclear warheads. Earlier, scientists from the Center received offers to kill any potentially unsafe objects using nuclear weapons. With all this deliver warheads produce by launch vehicles "Soyuz-2" and "Rus-M".

But still at the current time, America holds the first position in the investigation of potentially unsafe celestial bodies. On the territory of the United States is somewhat larger centers that detect small planets and gallakticheskie danger. So Makar, they get 99 percent of the total disk imaging on the matter.

With all of this South American scientists are trying to block access to other States to the data of their research. For example, in 2000, they forbade Russian scientist to enjoy the fruits of their own observations of the geostationary orbit, and after 9 years — and the observation data entry fireballs in the Earth's atmosphere. In such criteria Our homeland just have to do your monitoring program from potentially unsafe facilities and to seek cooperation with other states. In addition, the Roscosmos are afraid that because of the alleged collision of Earth and Apophis in the world can start brand new arms race, the end result of which is to create a new means of warfare not only on the planet, and in Earth orbit.

If we talk about the American developments in this area, you can not throw a no attention to the project, unique in its essence — Hypervelocity Asteroid Intercept Vehicle (HAIV). Its essence lies in the development of nuclear interceptor asteroids. In fact, you can read about what this program that developed by NASA, is focused on creating technologies to protect the planet from the likely consequences of the asteroid impact. HAIV itself for itself — it is gallaktichesky apparatus that using the kinetic energy will be able to seep inside the asteroid, and then work to develop nuclear weapons. So Makar, occur or complete destruction of a celestial object, or it will move to the line of motion. At this time, the pieces will not be safe for the Earth. This development is meant to be more effective in the fight against asteroids — less than 10 years before the collision device will be able to react to danger.

It will produce a direct interception of a celestial body for example EKV interceptor missile defense system the United States. Homing technology with the introduction of optical systems and guidance on the first portions of the trajectory worked sufficiently, but there are certain prepyadstviya. For example, if we consider that the rate of collision with an asteroid unit is approximately 10-30 km per second, the machine does not have enough kinetic energy in order to kill asteroid. The fact that modern technology is not yet have gained the level of development at which a nuclear device could undermine at high speed, since the impact of the components of the device will be one hundred percent destroyed, and the explosion simply will not.

That's why the project developers have designed a special nose, which will be separated and which must penetrate into the asteroid, roughly speaking, a hole, so that the interceptor with a nuclear bomb could not dangerous to enter deep into the asteroid. If the calculations are correct NASA professionals, the nuclear explosion will have a capacity of about 6 megatons.

Causes a certain enthusiasm and the project company from the United States SEI. The essence of it is to run on an asteroid malehankih bots. They need to dig into the surface of the object, throw rocks into space and so makarom change the line of motion of its movement.

Another South American non-profit organization — B612 Foundation, composed of scientists and former astronauts NASA offers in 2017-2018 to launch its own space infrared telescope that will detect and track asteroids are potentially unsafe. The title is borrowed from the literature of the organization, from a story by Antoine de Saint-Exupery's "The Little Prince". Everyone who comes of it, convinced that South American astrologers do not pay enough attention to small asteroids, giving preference to the study of large objects, the diameter of which is more than 1 kilometer. Their telescope, by contrast, is designed to track small objects in the sky. Sentinel telescope will be located in low Earth orbit about 5.5 years at a distance of 50-270 million km from the planet. So Makarov, it is understood that for the entire period of his stay in space telescope should find about 90 percent of all small asteroids, the diameter of which more than 150 meters. For the project to several hundred million dollars.

There are also international developments. So, it is not so long ago, was designed to develop "painting" of celestial objects, which aims to protect the planetoid from possible danger. Scientists from the Institute of Texas with the Ames Research Center (NASA) and the Research Centre of the ruler of Saudi Arabia, Abdul Aziz brought their own contribution to the development of technologies to an asteroid. They offered to change the trajectory of the asteroid without the use of nuclear weapons. The essence of technology is to affect the movement of a celestial object by the configuration of its reflective capabilities. To do this with the help of a special unit of unmanned gallakticheskogo apply the paint to the surface of the asteroid (or light, or black). With all this intense will to act Yarkovsky effect. Since the reactive force, which appears under its influence is very small, then using contrasting colors can be noticeable increment. Try out your own way, scientists want to Apophis. At the very beginning of the mission, which received the title of Apophis Mitigation Technology Mission (AMTM), is meant to send a scout small sizes to characterize the asteroid. Then it should go to gallaktichesky apparatus, filled with a unit for electrostatic painting, which will cover some areas of Apophis paint. According to scientists, this will give an opportunity to change the albedo of the asteroid and deflect the line of movement of its motion for approximately three degrees.

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