Nasa scrambles for better asteroid detection
Published on Feb 19, 2013 5:50 AM
WASHINGTON (AFP) - Nasa, universities and private groups in the United States (US) are working on asteroid warning systems that can detect objects from space like the one that struck Russia last week with a blinding flash and mighty boom.
But the US space agency reiterated that events like the one in the Urals, which shattered windows and injured nearly 1,000 people, are rare.
"We would expect an event of this magnitude to occur once every 100 years on average," said Mr Paul Chodas of Nasa's Near-Earth Object Programme Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.
Nasa estimates that before entering the Earth's atmosphere above Russia, the asteroid measured 17 metres in diameter and weighed 10 tons.
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