The next asteroid to hit Earth could be Apophis. Deep Astronomy states that the asteroid, which was discovered in 2004, could hit on April 13, 2036.
Earth has been hit by asteroids many times throughout its history. Space.com states there were 26 observed explosions attributed to asteroid strikes between the years 2000 and 2013.
The majority of asteroids that scientists have formally identified reside between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Scientists call this wide swath of space the asteroid belt, and though it contains millions of objects, the combined size of all of the asteroids in the belt is smaller than the Earth’s
Asteroid composition varies based on the asteroid's origin. An asteroid can contain rock, metal, clay, silicate, nickel, iron and water. All asteroids are covered in regolith, which is a rocky rubble. Regolith is commonly called space dust.
Asteroids have an average speed of 25 kilometers per second or roughly 15.5 miles per second. This measurement comes from scientists who monitor asteroids in earth's vicinity.
Most asteroids originate from a large area between the planets Mars and Jupiter. This area is most commonly referred to as the asteroid belt and contains more than 200 large asteroids. Some asteroids may originate from other regions in space.
The three primary types of asteroids are C-type, M-type and S-type. Asteroids are categorized according to their composition. C-type asteroids are carbonaceous, M-type asteroids are metallic and S-type asteroids are silicaceous.
Asteroids are formed from the leftovers of the formation of our solar system from about 4.6 billion years ago. Early on, the birth of Jupiter prevented any planetary bodies from forming in the gap between Mars and Jupiter, causing the small objects that were there to collide with each other and frag
The largest known asteroid by mass is 4 Vesta, which makes up about 9 percent of the mass of the entire asteroid belt. The asteroid 2 Pallas is slightly larger by volume, but it is less massive than 4 Vesta.
Ukrainian scientists discovered a large asteroid in late 2013 that could possibly strike the Earth on Aug. 26, 2032. If such a collision occurred, it would strike with a force 50 times greater than the largest atomic bomb.