Do you remember back in the late 90s when a giant asteroid was supposedly headed for earth to kill all of us? It spawned some interesting movies and tons of talk of when the, “big one,” might hit. People started getting legitimately scared of asteroids slamming into the planet's surface. However, being afraid of something that apparently already happens all the time seems a little silly. Scientists have compiled data showing just how much of a pummeling our home gets from interstellar rocks, and it's eye-opening.
According to Fox News, since the beginning of the 21st century (you know, 14 years ago), dozens of asteroids have slammed into Earth's surface, some of them with tons more energy than an atomic bomb. The B612 Foundation, in honor of Earth Day, released a cool animation showing the impacts.
The data used to create the video comes from a network of sensors around the globe which are actually used to detect nuclear detonations, owned by the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization. Since the start of the century, the instruments have detected 26 explosions on Earth ranging from 1 to 600 kilitons of energy. All of these explosions have been linked to incoming asteroids . By comparison, the bomb dropped on Hiroshima during World War II was about 15 kilitons.
So why don't we feel these ridiculously powerful impacts? Fortunately for us earthlings, most collisions go unnoticed because they explode way up in the atmosphere and don't cause a ton of damage on the surface. A lot of the ones that do make it through careen into the ocean. Sometimes though they do actually hit populated areas. Remember last year when that terrifying fireball tore through the Russian sky? That monster injured more than 1,000 people and damaged a lot of property.
And apparently, we have missed those giant civilization killing asteroids by sheer luck. That's comforting isn't it? Scientists have only been able to track and mark about 10,000 of the millions of space objects that have the potential to wipe out cities. I personally hope that there's a ton of new technology, and soon, that can map dangerous space objects soon, otherwise we might have to live out Deep Impact in reality. No thanks. Check out the video below to see a compilation of footage from that crazy Russian asteroid.