Human space technology today, especially from developed countries like the United States and Russia, capable of detecting a space object that has the potential to pound the Earth. But, in the event a meteor explosion in Russia on Friday (15/02/2013), humans apparently “missed”.
The question is, why do people and technology can be cheated?
“No detection of meteor that exploded in Russia may be due to the limitations of the current system in detecting celestial objects with small distances,” said Dr. Judge L. Sit, expert Astronomy ITB, when contacted Kompas.com, Sunday (02/17/2013).
The judge said the celestial body size is considered small when less than 30 meters.
The same was noted astrophysicist National Aeronautics and Space Agency (LAPAN), Thomas Djamaluddin. “The size is too small asteroid made its presence difficult to detect,” he said.
Thomas said, the object space near the earth today are detected using optical methods. Object detection by this method is based on the apparent brightness of the object. This method has limitations in the detection of space objects are small.
“Detecting small asteroids is difficult because the objects are very faint especially when the distance is far away from the Earth, so it often escapes observation,” said Thomas, who was also contacted today.
“If detected, usually asteroid is located at a distance very close to the Earth and we can not do much to avoid it. Unlike asteroid 2012 DA14 is relatively easy to spot,” he added.
Asteroid 2012 DA14 known to pass near Earth on Saturday (02/16/2013) early morning Indonesia time.
According to Thomas, the relatively small-sized asteroid that could potentially hit the Earth was ever detected. Unfortunately, it’s just by accident. Asteroid hit Earth in 2008, precisely in the Sudan, Africa.
The asteroid that crashed in Sudan smaller, diameterya only 6 meters. Taken into account, 19 hours after falling asteroid detected. What impact has also been determined. And, collisions do occur according to predictions.
Thomas added, in addition to its small size, the speed of the meteor when it fell to Earth as well be one factor is not detected meteor that exploded in Russia.
“The average speed while falling asteroid could reach 20-30 km / sec or equivalent 70,000 km – 100,000 km / h. Therefore if the asteroid were identified at a distance of 2 million miles, that means the asteroid is already very close to the Earth, “said Thomas.
More recent information from the official portal NASA sized meteorite that exploded in Russia by 17 meters (previously 15 meters) and weighs 10,000 tons. Although classified as small, meteorites bigger than the meteor that crashed off the Bone Beach in 2008. The explosion led to 200,000 square meters of glass broken at the disaster site, and injured about 1,200 people.
Judge and Thomas explained, the damage at the site is not caused by collision or meteor fragments, but pleh shock wave that arises when a meteor exploded.