Thursday, April 17, 2008

13 Year Old Knows More Than NASA - Yeah Right!!!

Busted. The story that is knocking around the net at the moment about a 13 year old kid that has recalculated an asteroid impact is complete rubbish. Yes there is an asteroid called Apophis, and yes it will pass Earth, but an no time will it come near any satellites that might change its path causing it to crash. More after the jump.

Both Bad Astronomy and New Scientist websites have posted new articles, here and here saying that the story is essentially not true. The Agence France Presse (AFP) had originaly stated that:
"NASA had told the European Space Agency that the boy's calculations were
New Scientist reports that NASA have said:

"Contrary to recent press reports, NASA offices involved in near-Earth object
research were not contacted and have had no correspondence with a young German
student, who claims the Apophis impact probability is far higher than the
current estimate"

What has happened here that someone somewhere has picked up on a story an run with it without checking the facts, basic journalism fuck up if you ask me. This is how rumours spread and potentially cause grief somewhere down the track. The fact that this story has made its way all over the net has quite frankly amazed me. I thought people would be more skeptical with this information. Needless to say that the truth seems to be spreading at a similar speed and maybe next time people with think before believing.

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