NASA have released details of an asteroid, known as JF1, that is heading towards Earth. The rock, a whopping 420ft across, is predicted to collide with the planet on May 6, 2022, with devastating consequences. The American space agency have said that if the asteroid continues on its current trajectory, it could strike with a force of 230 kilotons (230,000 tonnes of TNT).
The European Space Agency [ESA] mission, called Hera, will perform “a close-up survey of the post-impact asteroid,” collecting vital information about such as the asteroid’s composition as well as the size of the crater left behind after impact.
Ian Carnelli, controller of the ESA Hera mission said: “DART can perform its mission without Hera – the effect of its impact on the asteroid’s orbit will be measurable using Earth ground-based observatories alone.”