65-Million years ago, the asteroid that hit the Yucatan Peninsula – leaving a crater approximately 110 miles wide and 12 miles deep – is widely believed to have raised the dust cloud that triggered the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs. With an eye toward preventing (if possible) the repetition of such an Earth-shattering event, NASA keeps track of PHA’s – or potentially hazardous asteroids – to improve predictions of close encounters with these flying objects and to more accurately assess and potentially deter the threat of impact and damage from them.
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