AST101Lab8 - Astronomy 101 Online - Doomsday Asteroid...

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Astronomy 101 Online - Doomsday Asteroid Introduction : Collisions play an extremely important role in forming the surface features of planets. It is believed that the Earth obtained much of its water from the collision of comets in the early formation of the solar system. It is also believed that major extinctions occurring on the Earth might have been a consequence of major collisions. Is there any chance of a major collision occurring in our lifetime? If so, what consequences will it have on the planet - as well as us? Can humans survive such a cataclysmic event? This lab discusses some of the major collisions in the history of the Earth, the consequences of a large collision occurring today, and the possibility of future collisions. Procedure : Start by going to the following website: http://impact.arc.nasa.g ov/ .
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In the sidebar, click on the link for "Introduction and FAQs". At the top of the text page on the right hand side, you will find a box with a link titled "FAQs about NEO Impacts". Click on the link, read through the page and answer the following questions: 1. What is the minimum size for an asteroid that will cause devastation on a global scale? 2 km in diameter 2. How long ago did the dinosaurs die out? What do Astronomers think was responsible for their deaths? 65 million years ago and they believe it was a 15 km 100 million megaton NEO 3. How many Near Earth Objects (NEOs) are larger than 1 km in diameter? How many are larger than 40 m in diameter? 1100>1 km Millions>40 m 4. What are the odds of dying in an event that would cause global devastation? 1 in 40,000
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5. What is the government doing to prevent such a global devastation? They set up the Spaceguard Program which monitors the sky for NEO’s larger than 1 km in diameter and has an objective to find 90% of the by 2008. Return to the main
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AST101Lab8 - Astronomy 101 Online - Doomsday Asteroid...

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