With time, we have come to fear asteroids, but we never thought that comets could be more dangerous than asteroids. A team of astronomers from the University of Buckingham and from the Armagh Observatory reported hundreds of giant comets, outside of our planetary system, meaning a possible great danger to Earth.
The research of the team was published in the Astronomy and Geophysics journal, that belongs to the Royal Astronomical Society. It appears that the giant comets, also called centaurs move on the crossing and unstable orbits of Jupiter, Neptune, Uranus and Saturn. The big issue is that the gravitational fields of these planets could redirect these comets towards our planet.
The comets called centaurs have a typical length that varies between 50 and 100 kilometers, but it can also be larger. The body of comet contains more mass than all the comets that have ever crossed the Earth, which is an alarming news. According to the calculations done by the team of astronomers, a centaur will enter the solar system and will cross the orbit of the Earth around every 40,000 to 100,000 years.
When comets come near the Earth space, they usually disintegrate into large parts and dust. But because these are extremely big, unprecedented comets, the debris left from a former comet in the solar system would cause major damage to our planet. Experts believe that around 30,000 years ago, a centaur entered the solar system. Their belief is based on damage caused to the earth and the interruption of the ancient civilizations progress at a certain point. They think that when to comet entered the Earth space, dust and huge lumps of the comet were spread on a kilometric surface.
The environmental damage identified by paleontologists and geologists, caused approximately in 10,800 BCE and 2,300 BCE could be the because of a centaur. Even the extinction of the dinosaurs around 65 million years ago could be the proof of the cometary population.
One of the professor involved in the study, called Napier said that for many years, astronomers have researched the possibilities of an asteroid hitting the Earth. He said that scientists should study comets as well, because they pose as much danger, or an even bigger danger than asteroids, towards the Earth. He also suggested that comets should be looked for beyond Jupiter’s orbit as well. If they are right, these comets could be more dangerous than asteroids. Because they could provoke hazards, they should be better studied and understood.
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