Asteroid Apophis gaining speed to hitting Earth in 2068 with 880million tons of TNT of force

The Show Time/source Daily Mail

An asteroid named after the God of Chaos is gaining speed as it travels on a path towards Earth - and could strike our planet in 48 years, experts warn.Astronomers at the University of Hawai'i confirmed the massive asteroid Apophis has accelerated on its path due to non-uniform radiation, which acts like a tiny thruster. Prior to the discovery, the impact was said to impossible, but the new findings suggest the asteroid has a chance of crashing into Earth on April 12, 2068 - and it could be catastrophic. Apophis is more than 1,000 feet wide and an impact would be equivalent to 880 million tons of trinitrotoluene (TNT) exploding all at once. Apophis was discovered on June 19, 2004 by astronomers at the Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona. Since then the asteroid has been tracked as it orbits the sun, which it completes less than one Earth year. Researchers spotted Aphophis with the Subaru telescope earlier this year and determined it had picked up speed following the analysis, known as the Yarkovsky effect. Dave Tholen, one of the astronomers, said: 'The new observations we obtained with the Subaru telescope earlier this year were good enough to reveal the Yarkovsky acceleration of Apophis, and they show that the asteroid is drifting away from a purely gravitational orbit by about 170 meters per year, which is enough to keep the 2068 impact scenario in play: Apophis has also been given the title of the third highest threat on NASA's Sentry Risk Table, Gizmodo reports,

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