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NASA: "Pray" if Asteroid Comes Toward Earth

3/22/2013


This asteroid passed closely by Earth recently.  (photo courtesy NASA)

When asked what they would do if an asteroid was going to hit earth within three weeks, NASA officials had a surprising response.

Listen:

The response was 'pray.'  This comes weeks after a meteor strike in Siberia and an asteroid passing closely by the earth.  NASA officials say dealing with asteroids has been put off for decades.  Brian Murphy with the Holcomb Observatory at Butler University says while that may be true, it couldn't have been dealt with decades ago because the country didn't have the technology with which to do it.

Murphy says we know about 90 to 95 percent of large asteroids in the area.  However, he says we only know about ten percent of the smaller ones which are about the size of Lucas Oil Stadium.  Murphy says if one of those starts heading toward the earth and we find out about it three weeks from impact, there isn't much we can do about it.

Murphy says only about one thousandth of NASA's budget is being spent on this research.  He says that's because of its other directives such as manned space flight and robotic probes.

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