Garbage Asteroid Discovered By Chile Observatory Hurtling Toward Earth

Garbage Asteroid Discovered By Chile Observatory Hurtling Toward Earth


Astronomers at the Santa Lago Observatory in Chile this month have discovered a large near-earth asteroid making its way toward earth that appears to be composed entirely of garbage.

The Minor Planet Center at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory was not available for comment, but the graduate student who made the discovery, Pablo Dominguez, said that the large asteroid came to light on a routine observation around 2AM one night.

“We were assisting in a survey of a quadrant of the Centaurus A galaxy, when this shadow started crossing the field of view. I backed off several powers, thinking it was a satellite in earth’s orbit, but soon realized it was further away. By the time I had properly framed the object, I could see it was something unusual.”

Mr. Dominguez went to find his professor who was in the office, and the two of them made some adjustments to bring the garbage asteroid into clearer view. “The trajectory of this garbage asteroid would place its origin somewhere in the Orion system” said Professor Esmerelda Fuentes, “and it’s speed suggests it has been traveling for 423 million years to get here.”

Although the new find has yet to be given a proper classification, astronomers have already begun to formulate theories about how the asteroid, which measures 5 miles across and 1.2 miles wide at its apex, could have formed and why.

“Perhaps it is from an advanced civilization that found a way to eject garbage from their orbit thru some energy-efficient means.” said Professor Fuentes. “Or then again, it might have been the result of an impact on the planet’s surface from another asteroid, which happened to hit an enormous pile of garbage. We just don’t know.”

While a trip to the asteroid might yield some clues about intelligent life in other places, NASA, the European Space Agency, the China National Space Administration, and the Russian Federal Space Agency have already ruled out sending a probe. “It might seem interesting on the surface. But at the end of the day, who wants to spend 50 million dollars so they can go pick thru someone else’s garbage?” said Professor Fuentes.

When asked whether there may be more garbage asteroids headed for earth, Professor Fuentes said more study was needed. “There does appear to be a large number of unidentified objects in the wake of the garbage asteroid. It’s certainly possible that this could be the first in a long line of garbage asteroids headed our way” she said.

The garbage asteroid is expected to make landfall in the vicinity of Fresh Kills Park on Staten Island sometime in 2024.
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