The White House asked NASA to simulate what would happen if an asteroid hit Earth in 2027 as part of the White House's National Near-Earth Object Preparedness Strategy and Action Plan, and the simulation took place last week, according to USA Today.
In the College Park, Md., demonstration, an asteroid became a threat and was expected to hit Denver. The simulation team fired spacecrafts to try to divert the 140- to 260-meter space rock, but part of it chipped off and headed for New York City. By the end, researchers decided in the fictional scenario to evacuate the city.
Have you been following this year's #FictionalEvent at the #PlanetaryDefense Conference in Washington DC?— ESA Operations (@esaoperations) May 3, 2019
A 60-m fragment of (hypothetical) asteroid #2019PDC is headed straight for New York, and evacuations are under way.
Now: Discussions, recommendations and lessons learnt pic.twitter.com/ja6Lomf3zN
NASA engineer Paul Chodas, who designed the scenario told AFP that it was "highly unlikely.”
“But we wanted the issues to be exposed and discussed,” he added.
According to USA Today, NASA said that no asteroid is expected to threaten Earth for 100 years
"These exercises have really helped us in the planetary defense community to understand what our colleagues on the disaster management side need to know," Lindley Johnson, NASA's planetary defense officer, said in a statement, according to the newspaper. "This exercise will help us develop more effective communications with each other and with our governments."