And they need to hurry up about it since our present asteroid defense system is to be retired by Quentin Tarantino in the near future!
-----------> What'll happen if they missing one on the way in!
Astronomers have spotted a potentially hazardous asteroid thanks to a new algorithm that will be deployed in the upcoming Vera C Rubin Observatory in Chile, which is currently under construction. Asteroid 2022 SF289 was first spotted last year when researchers began testing the HelioLinc3D algorithm on data collected in the …
Entirely possible that they'll miss something. 2023 NT1, for example, passed at 1/4 of the Moon's distance on July 13th, but wasn't spotted until July 15th. It wasn't that big - around 30 metres - but compared to, say, the Chelyabinsk meteor, which was around 18 metres, it was big enough to cause a very bad day locally if it had hit. Hopefully the new systems coming online soon will be better at spotting asteroids coming in from near the Sun's direction.
Ugly truth: for the foreseeable future, this mission does not care about a "very bad day locally". It's about "a very bad day globally". Sure, if we can spot and have time & money to deal with a smaller problem, we'll go for it. But even the loss of a hundred thousand souls just isn't big enough for this. Yet.
It's very comfortable that they are doing the research that could help us work to stop a big rock arriving unexpectedly. Certainly there's no guarantee about what could happen but they are working to make life better for the world (icon). I'm always a little concerned that we have not been hit by a large asteroid for thousands of year but there have been strikes in the past and just a few very small ones in my lifetime. So a strike is possible but their work suggests that it's not very risky these days.