Beware the God of Chaos


The giant 'God of Chaos' asteroid will pass close to the Earth ten years from now and it could be in the path of some orbiting spacecraft. Scientists are preparing now.

Rice professor Dr. Patricia Reiff says if it hit us, it would be as bad as the one that killed the dinosaurs. But we know this one's coming.

"Well, it's not the things you know that are going to kill you, it's the things that you don't know that you don't know."

Dr. Reiff says a comet proves things change.

"The comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 did a close pass with Jupiter and it affected its orbit, so the next time it came by Jupiter it hit Jupiter."

Dr. Reiff says we can certainly be surprised.

"Most of the near-Earth asteroids are in the ecliptic plane but the more distant asteroids are in random orientation, with respect to the ecliptic plane, so they're harder to find."

Dr. Reiff says asteroids that are not expected to hit us can hit something else and change direction and wind on a path to hit Earth.


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