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There’s a potentially dangerous asteroid headed toward Earth and NASA wants students to name it. If it seems like there is no pressing concern about the whole potential collision course thing, it’s because there really isn’t. The asteroid won’t swing close to our world for another 170 years, when we will all be long dead, unless some crazy technology out of science fiction gets implemented pretty soon. Beyond that, the asteroid only has a 1 in 1,000 chance of hitting the Earth, so no biggie. The survival of future generations is clearly no pressing concern.

To study the asteroid, NASA has an extremely expensive mission planned that is going to cost around $800 million (shell out ye taxpayers!). According to the Osiris-Rex mission could unlock some of the mysteries of the origins of the universe, which is probably worth a few hundred million, right?

So, where does this student asteroid naming thing come in? NASA says they want to get the younger generation involved in space exploration and other aspects of science that NASA is caught up in. It’s actually a pretty cool idea. All students have to do is write up a 16 character or under name for the asteroid and fill out the reason they think the name would be spectacular. Oh yeah, and students must be 18 or under. Plus, the students must find an adult to submit the name (Probably to weed out the idiot teens that would try to get the terms "pussy" or "penis" somewhere into the title). Applications are due by December 2. If I were under 18, I’d vote for R2Detour.

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