They even calculated how much firepower they might need.
NASA, and some other scientists, keep an eye on space objects that might get on Earth’s path. Luckily, for now, there are no objects that threaten us. However, it is not uncommon for an object to simply show up on the radars out of nowhere. And that could be worrying if said object is big and is heading our way.
This is the reason that Russian scientist are developing plans about blowing up an asteroid with a nuke if it gets too close. If, say, a 200 m asteroid needs to be blown up, you’d need a 3 Mt nuke, which is 200 times more powerful that the bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
But this should be taken with a grain of salt, since nobody has actually done this. The next problem are the leftovers. Now you would not have a giant asteroid, but hundreds or thousands of pieces of the asteroid heading towards Earth. Sure, most of it will burn out, but those that don’t could still cause trouble. Still, a 2 meter asteroid is better than a 200 meter one.
The Russians aren’t the only ones considering nuking asteroids. Universe Today reports that NASA is working on a project called HAMMER, or Hyper-velocity Asteroid Mitigation Mission for Emergency Response. As writer Evan Gough notes, it’s just an idea. An idea to nuke asteroids.