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New observations rule out 2019 asteroid impact
Posted: Mon, Jul 29, 2002, 10:09 AM ET (1409 GMT)
Asteroid impact illustration (Don Davis/NASA) New observations of a near-Earth asteroid have ruled out any chance that the object will collide with Earth in 2019, as had been reported last week. JPL reported late Sunday that new observations, made by an amateur astronomer in Austria, had eliminated any chance that asteroid 2002 NT7 would collide with Earth on February 1, 2019. Astronomers reported last week that, based on data available at that time, there was anywhere from a 1-in-60,000 to 1-in-250,000 chance that NT7 would collide with the Earth. Astronomers cannot rule out a potential future impact, noting that there is still a slight (1-in-350,000) chance of a collision on February 1, 2060. Reports of a possible collision, however slight, were widely reported in the media last week, and some argue that the reports were unduly sensationalized. An article on SPACE.com today includes quotes from several scientists who expressed this disapproval of some of articles last week that attempted to hype the threat
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