A former astronaut says the only thing preventing a catastrophe from a 'city-killer' sized asteroid is blind luck.
Shuttle veteran Ed Lu says that since 2001, a nuclear weapons warning network has recorded 26 atomic explosions -- all but one were asteroids hitting the Earth.
“Most of these impacts happen in places that are remote, because most of the Earth is unpopulated, its either ocean, desert, mountains or something like that,” he tells KTRH News. “But, out current strategy for dealing with this issue is blind luck.”
Lu has since started the B612 Foundation to do something about it.
“The first and most important step in stopping this is to find and track these things so you can deflect them years before they hit, when they're still millions of miles from the Earth,” he says.
Lu's foundation is raising money to develop a spacecraft to do just that -- much like the movie 'Armageddon.'
“The total cost of this project, to build a spacecraft called 'Sentinel,' is about the cost of building a large freeway overpass, we think that's a pretty good deal,” he says.
Lu and two other former astronauts will present their findings at Seattle's Museum of Flight Tuesday.