Asteroid May Hit The Red Planet

Friday, December 28th 2007, 8:19 pm
By: News On 6

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The chances are getting better than an asteroid will gouge a half-mile chunk out of the Red Planet.

Scientists have upgraded the likelihood of a direct hit from asteroid 2007 WD from a 1-in-75 chance to 1-in-25. It's still a long shot, but those odds have many scientists giddy at the thought of cosmic fireworks. The head of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program says the crash would be "cool."

A Ph.D. student scoured through archives to come up with data used to recalculate the odds the football field-sized rock will add a new crater to the Red Planet's surface.

If the impact happens, it would likely slam north of where the rover Opportunity has been exploring since 2004.

The asteroid poses no threat to Earthlings.