Asteroid Day is next week — top five things you need to know
- The sixth annual celebration of Asteroid Day will be held on 30 June 2020.
- Asteroid Day marks the anniversary of the
1908 Tunguska asteroid impact.
- Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year Asteroid Day will be celebrated digitally by live-streaming the events and panels from Luxembourg.
This year the sixth annual Asteroid Day will be celebrated digitally and live-streamed from Luxembourg. Asteroid Day events and panels will focus on the role of asteroids in the formation of our solar system and advances in technology to better detect, track and analyze asteroids and review our ability to deflect a rogue asteroid headed towards Earth.
- What is an asteroid?
Asteroids are the leftover remnants from when the solar system was born. They’re the shattered fragments of proto-planets that never made it to maturity. Each asteroid is different and has its own story to tell.
- What is Asteroid Day?
The goal of Asteroid Day is to raise awareness and educate the world about the role of asteroids in the solar system — how they came to be, the resources they hold, how they can pave the way for future exploration and most importantly, how Earth can be protected against any potential asteroid impacts. We celebrate Asteroid Day to mark the anniversary of the 1908 Tunguska asteroid impact.
- What is the 1908 Tunguska asteroid impact?
On 30 June 1908, a small asteroid struck the Earth over Tunguska in Siberia. The Tunguska meteor is known to be the largest natural object to ever enter the Earth’s atmosphere. It reportedly flattened 2,000 square kilometres of forest. The impact was 1000 times more powerful than the Hiroshima bomb with the power of 15 megatons of TNT.
- When was Asteroid Day first celebrated?
Asteroid Day was first celebrated in 2015. It was co-founded by astrophysicist and legendary guitarist and song-writer for Queen Brain May, the director of 51 Degrees North Greg Richters, Apollo 9 astronaut Rusty Schweickart and president of the B612 Foundation Danica Remy. In its first year, over 163 self-organised events were held across 48 countries with over 65,000 participants. In 2016, the movement was officially designated Asteroid Day by the United Nations (UN) as the international day of awareness and education about asteroids.
- How will Asteroid Day be celebrated in 2020?
This year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, Asteroid Day will be a fully digital celebration will panel discussions and one-on-one interviews with astronauts and world experts. You can catch the live broadcast of Asteroid Day from Luxembourg here.
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