You’re likely to read this news on other media as “Huge asteroid will hit the Earth in 2880” – that’s bull, and I’ll explain why.

A Hollywoodian artistic representation of an asteroid hitting the Earth. Image credits: Alamy.

The kilometre-wide asteroid 1950 DA has a one-in-300 chance on 16 March, 2880. 1 in 300 chance is indeed a bit unnerving, but let’s put things into perspective here – the odds are the same as you guessing the next number in the roulette 2 times in a row. It’s not happening, almost certainly. Also, this is the most likely asteroid to hit our planet in the foreseeable future.

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It’s admirable that researchers are studying its trajectory and “travel habits” even now, almost a millennium before its projected potential impact, and that’s why we have a pretty good safety net when it comes to asteroids: we’ll see it coming.

According to their research, published in the science journal Nature, the asteroid has a diameter of one kilometre and is travelling at nine miles a second relative to the Earth. It’s also rotating incredibly fast – so fast that it’s a wonder it’s not breaking apart. Should it indeed hit Earth, it would devastate life as we know, creating a similar impact to the one which likely wiped off the dinosaurs at the end of the Mesozoic.

Meanwhile, we have much more serious problems to deal with – for example the mass extinction we’re causing at the moment, or the rising temperatures which again we are to blame for, or the ocean acidification. Just sayin’.