Those concerned about the possibility that 2036 will be the year our planet gets hit by Apophis, a.k.a. the “doomsday asteroid,” can now rest assured: the world as we know it will not end in 23 years' time.
According to researchers working with NASA, this space rock will indeed pay us another two visits within said timeframe (one in 2029 and one in 2036).
However, it will simply pass by our planet, so one need not worry about a dangerously close encounter.
“With the new data provided by the Magdalena Ridge [New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology] and the Pan-STARRS [Univ. of Hawaii] optical observatories, along with very recent data provided by the Goldstone Solar System Radar, we have effectively ruled out the possibility of an Earth impact by Apophis in 2036,” explained Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office at JPL.
What Don Yeomans means is that, following their reviewing this asteroid's trajectory, scientists reached the conclusion that, all things considered, there are less than one in a million chances that Apophis will hit our planet in 2036.
Seeing how the asteroid is roughly the size of three-and-a-half football fields, this comes as good news indeed.