Is The Toutatis Asteroid A Potential Threat To Earth In The Future?

A recent video (shown below) combines 64 radar images taken Wednesday and Thursday by NASA’s Deep Space Network antenna in Goldstone, California.

The new radar images, which have a resolution of 12 feet (3.75 meters) per pixel, show the 3-mile-wide Toutatis asteroid in great detail.

The video shows that the Toutatis asteroid is an elongated, irregularly shaped mass with multiple ridges. Researchers say that the strange bright glints may indicate surface boulders on the asteroids surface.

On Wednesday and Thursday, the Toutatis asteroid was about 4.3 million miles (7 million kilometers) from Earth. That is about 18 times farther away than the moon is from Earth.

The video not only shows a detailed view of the Toutatis asteroid buzzing by the earth, but it also gives new information on how the asteroid moves.

According to NBC News, scientists say that the asteroid spins on its long axis every 5.4 days and wobbles through space like a badly thrown football.

The Toutatis asteroid did not pose a threat to Earth as it passed by this week, and researchers say that there is no chance it will hit our planet over the next four centuries or so.

However, the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts lists the Toutatis asteroid as a potential threat. They listed it as a potential threat, meaning that it could pose a risk to Earth at some point in the future.

The Toutatis asteroid would cause catastrophic damage if it ever did collide with Earth. If it ever did, it could potentially extinguish humanity and many other species.

Scientists believe that, in general, a strike by anything at least 0.6 miles (1 km) wide could have global consequences.

For the sake of comparison, the asteroid thought to have wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago was an estimated 6 miles (10 km) across.

The Toutatis asteroid takes a trip around the sun every four years and will pass by Earth again in November 2069.

The asteroid will then pass safely by Earth by about 1.8 million miles.

Here is the recent detailed video of the asteroid passing by Earth.