Around 66 million years ago, a giant asteroid that screeched across space at breathtaking speed hit the earth and resulted in the extinction of the dinosaurs. Since then, no such space rocks have reached the earth's vicinity, but space experts believe that replication of this doomsday event could happen in the future, as apocalyptic asteroid hits are not confined to the past.
Near-earth object tracking and the United Kingdom
As threats from space loom, space agencies like NASA are vigorously tracking near-earth objects that could pose a threat to the existence of life on the blue planet. On NASA's CNEOS website, the space agency has listed hundreds of thousands of potentially hazardous asteroids that could hit the earth one day.
As the United States is dominating the space race, Jason Jay Tate, a prominent asteroid hunter, believes that the United Kingdom is not prepared enough to combat the dangers posed by an incoming asteroid. Tate made these revelations while talking exclusively to Express.co.uk.
"I wouldn't bother telling people in the UK, it would be a waste of time until things change. No, we deal directly with the United States or the European Space Agency – they're beginning to kick in on this game now. They're building space telescopes, they're developing projects very quickly as part of the Space Situational Awareness Programme. We have quite a close touch with the near-earth object segment of that, so Europe's playing. Unfortunately, the UK didn't sign up for that project, so again, we're out of the game," said Tate.
What will happen if a giant asteroid hits the earth?
Space experts believe that human beings will be wiped out from the earth if a giant asteroid hits the planet with its full fury. The doomsday asteroid that hit the blue planet 66 million years ago had resulted in the extinction of 70 per cent of all species on the earth.
If such an asteroid hit again happens, it will surely trigger another mass extinction event. As per space expert Lembit Öpik, only cockroaches, some deep-sea creatures and other living beings that feed on dead meat will survive an asteroid impact.