Close Call: Feared Asteroid Will Miss Earth, NASA Says
A collision would have released 100 megatons of energy.
While some folks were speculating about 2012 being the year we'd see the end of the world, NASA had its focus on another year. In 2040, researchers had thought there was a remote, but possible, chance less than an asteroid would hit Earth. After a request for more observation, new research from NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office in Pasadena, Calif., has found that the Earth's position is not in range of the asteroid's path after all. The asteroid, which is 460 feet in diameter is said to be at least 550,000 miles away from Earth -- twice that of the distance to the moon. That's far enough away to avoid a collision with Earth which, if possible, would release about 100 megatons of energy, or several thousand times more powerful than the atomic bombs that ended World War II. (CNN)