Art Cashin Previews The February 15 Close Encounter Of A Meteor Kind

Tyler Durden's picture

While UBS' Art Cashin sees the 'uptrend' in stocks as largely in tact, though warns of the start of what appears to be a stalling formation, there is another 'bigger' potential crash on his mind. Having survived the Mayan apocalypse, and a Papal resignation, our home planet is due for a record setting space encounter on Friday (Feb. 15) of this week... which means it is now too late to even send Bruce Willis (or better yet, Bob Pisani) into space for an Armageddon sequel. We are told to keep calm and carry on - Bernanke-like "there is nothing to worry about", but no known asteroid has traveled this close to earth in recorded history. Let's hope the slide rule guys have it nailed - or the grand central planner.


Nothing To Worry About They Assure Us – Here's a bit on the incoming asteroid by Ken Kremer in "Universe Today":

Our home planet is due for a record setting space encounter on Friday (Feb. 15) of this week, when a space rock roughly half a football field wide skirts very close by Earth at break neck speed and well inside the plethora of hugely expensive communications and weather satellites that ring around us in geosynchronous orbit.

“There is no possibility of an Earth impact” by the Near Earth Asteroid (NEO) known as 2012 DA 14, said Don Yeomans, NASA’s foremost asteroid expert at a media briefing. Well that’s good news for us – but a little late for the dinosaurs.

At its closest approach in less than 4 days, the 45 meter (150 feet) wide Asteroid 2012 DA14 will zoom by within an altitude of 27,700 kilometers (17,200 miles). That is some 8000 km (5000 miles) inside the ring of geosynchronous satellites, but far above most Earth orbiting satellites, including the 6 person crew currently working aboard the International Space Station.

Although the likelihood of a satellite collision is extremely remote, NASA is actively working with satellite providers to inform them of the space rocks path.

The razor thin close shave takes place at about 2:24 p.m. EST (11:24 a.m. PST and 1924 UTC) as the asteroid passes swiftly by at a speed of about 7.8 kilometers per second (17,400 MPH)- or about 8 times the speed of a rifle bullet. For some perspective, it will be only about 1/13th of the distance to the moon at its closest.

“Asteroid 2012 DA14 will make a very close Earth approach, traveling rapidly from South to North and be moving at about two full moons per minute,” said Yeomans, who manages NASA’s Near-Earth Object Program Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “That’s very fast for a celestial object.

No known asteroid has traveled this close to earth in recorded history. Let's hope the slide rule guys have it nailed.

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Water Is Wet's picture

PSA:  A black asshole with a history of murdering Americans (not Chris Dorner) will be spamming all the statist broadcast channels this evening.  You are advised to throw away your televisions.

tsx500's picture

i'd rather listen to Mike Tyson recite Shakespeare than spend one minute watching that cj tonight

francis_sawyer's picture

Put DORNER on it... He's a sneaky little shit...

Dr. Richard Head's picture

Any way to nudge this bitch towards the Federal Reserve HQ?

redpill's picture

Sorry in order to do that you'd need to connect your iRoid to iTunes, and unfortunately we're fresh out of cables that have our proprietary iRoid connector.

Manthong's picture

Hmm.. I wonder..

Really, this has been pretty much a non-event since it was first revealed.. kind of like Benghazi or the birth certificate or the social security number.

Not much has been made of it at all and there is no chance it could hit, none at all, like a credit rating downgrade or a monetizing of the debt.

Still, I wonder where the very last comment Brian Williams made last year in this short clip came from.

BLOTTO's picture

Sun Worshippers have been tracking and following the movement of stars for ages.


Egyptians, Mayans, Sumerians, the Vatican and even the Royal Family...


Astronomers Royal



Their is way more going on than the eye can see...

CommunityStandard's picture

Has anyone said "if it were to hit", where that would likely be?

redpill's picture

It's not if but when. The tough parts are where and how long from now

hedgeless_horseman's picture



Well, you could read several books such as The Long Emergency, Reinventing Collapse, One Second After, Alas Babylon, Patriots, and Lucifer's Hammer to gain an understanding of what some recent authors believe TEOTWAWKI might look like, and then try to formulate a plan on your own.


When wealthy soap company heir and amateur astronomer Tim Hamner codiscovers a new comet, dubbed Hamner-Brown, documentary producer Harvey Randall persuades Hamner to have his family's company sponsor a television documentary series on the subject. Political lobbying by California Senator Arthur Jellison eventually gets a joint Apollo-Soyuz (docking with the second flight-worthy Skylab) mission into space to study the comet, dubbed "The Hammer" by popular media, which is expected to pass close to the Earth. Despite assurances by the scientific community that a collision with Earth is extremely unlikely, the public, fueled with religious fervor by the evangelist Henry Armitage, begins to hoard food and supplies in anticipation.'s_Hammer


espirit's picture

Read that twice, many years apart.

Some valid defensive tactics to be taken seriously.

hedgeless_horseman's picture



Some valid defensive tactics to be taken seriously.

Indeed, like finding an excuse to not be in the LA Basin at zero hour.  Camping in the Sierra Nevada Mountains anyone?

espirit's picture

Actually, the entry control mechanism is most interesting.  At least from a security minded pov.

hedgeless_horseman's picture



Do you mean the defense of the ridge leading up to the valley?

espirit's picture

Much earlier. When establishing the encampment.

Badabing's picture

Everything will be OK, the FED can print up money and bribe NASA to change the numbers!

ElvisDog's picture

Well, except if the meteor were to impact in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Plus, there's not a lot of food available in those mountains and the water is contaminated with giardia. Other than that, it's a good plan.

hedgeless_horseman's picture



In the book there is plenty of fresh water and fresh meat.

goldfish1's picture

People. 150 feet? This doesn't appear noteworthy. Something three times bigger than my house hitting earth? C'mon. What am I missing here?

pods's picture

Seems it is about half the size of the Tunguska event asteroid/comet. 
Large enough to ruin your day if it lands in your area code.


viahj's picture

physics - if this thing hit your house, it would take out most of your city as well.

SilverRhino's picture

So would a nuke and we have detonated 2000+ on earth already.   

Sucks to be under it but I won't stress about a 50 meter asteroid. 

francis_sawyer's picture

Look on the bright side... If it does hit your house ~ the chances of it occurring a 2nd time would then be astronomical...

smiler03's picture

No. The chances of a second impact would be identical to the first.

Parrotile's picture

 - and the chances of one specific asteroid hitting one specific house are pretty "astronomical", so the statement is actually correct. (But so is yours, since the probability of such an event remains essentially the same (actually VERY slightly less, since we now have "one down, N - 1 millions or billions to go!")

LFMayor's picture

what you don't have in mass you can make up for in velocity.  This thing is moving how many meters/second?  How many joule does that translate to?

see also:  PR24 baton vs traditional nightstick or 5.56x45mm vs. 45/70.

zelator's picture

C'mon.  Understand the physics, fish.  Momentum (mass times velocity)  is the kicker.  Even if the mass is not so great, it still packs a lot of energy traveling at the speed of over 17,000 MPH.  Look up the Tunguska event

ElvisDog's picture

It's not the momentum, it's the kinetic energy = 1/2m*v*v. The kinetic energy will be converted to thermal energy and a blast wave when it hits the ground. The blast wave is the more dangerous of the two. When the space shuttle launched, anything within 1/4 mile would be killed due to the heat but the blast wave killed anything within 1/2 a mile.

RafterManFMJ's picture

Well goldfish the thing to worry about is they had the CBO measure it 11 months ago, so it could be bigger than the moon by now.

Ar-Pharazôn's picture

inform yourself before making stupid assumptions.


a 100 m meteor, if hit, could cause mass instinction

aardvarkk's picture

I seem to recall that in that one, an asteroid or something came along while it was swinging around the sun to deflect it JUST ENOUGH to impact.  So is anybody checking near space to see if anything else is headed toward this thing?  Talk about your basic black swan...

And I do suspect that if this impacted anywhere in the ocean, It Would Not Be A Good Day for a lot of people...

sunnydays's picture

I read that online.  That is one scary book in how and what things could look like.  That story has stayed with me, since I have read it. 



fourchan's picture

if it were sailing in to hit the usa do you think congress could get together to act on a course of action?

ElvisDog's picture

Honestly, I don't think it would be a planet-wrecker if it did hit. Half a football field is not that large and 7-8 km/s is not a particulary high entry velocity. It's more or less what the the Space Shuttle would enter at. A lunar-return object like Apollo enters at 11 km/s and energy is a function of of the square of velocity. Also the meteor would slow down and ablate (get smaller) as it went through the atmosphere.

Ar-Pharazôn's picture

a 100 m meteor can cause mass instinction. inform yourself before saying stupid things like. I THINK.


the world is not running on yours "i think"


Parrotile's picture

Both the Space Shuttle and the Apollo CMs were designed for a smooth re-entry, AND their re-entry trajectories were carefully calculated.
Large masses of space rocks / ice / whatever tend not to follow these rules, and will probably break up on impact with the denser parts of the atmosphere. If we're lucky it'll bounce back into space; if we're not, then assuming a 10 to 70km/sec speed, even at the "bottom end" velocity, we're looking at a lot of kinetic energy, and the probability of an explosive mid-atmospheric breakup (as was presumed to happen with the Tunguska meteorite). For a 70km/sec incomer, things could get "quite interesting" for everyone, not just those in the immediate impact vicinity.

"Global Ice Age" anyone??

1100-TACTICAL-12's picture

What happens if said roid hits some space junk or a sattalite. Will that not deflect it & changs its course? So I guess we don't have a clue where this thing is going.. just odds and %'s..

Dr. Engali's picture

If they knew do you really think they would tell us?

espirit's picture

Of course. The Gubbermint never "lies".


hedgeless_horseman's picture



I wonder how long it would it take a tsunami of that size to get to Los Angeles from Indonesia?

hedgeless_horseman's picture



It would only have a regional impact.

So, like The Valley would be, like, totally ok?


ElvisDog's picture

It would only have a regional impact

Correct. See my post above. Energy is 1/2m*v*v.  Let's say it's mass is 10000 kg. At 7.8 km/s that equals 3.042e+11 Joules. The Hiroshima bomb delivered 6e+13 Joules or 200 times more. So, even if the meteor weighed 2000 tons it would only equal the effect of Hiroshima and that is assuming that it doesn't slow down in the atmosphere (which it would) and would not ablate (which it would). So, yes, it would be bad if you were within a few miles of the impact but it would not be "the end of times"

Freedom In Your Lifetime's picture

The estimate its mass to be 143,000 tons so you may need to revise your calculations a bit. It won't be the end of times, but it will be just a bit larger than hiroshima if it hits.

TPTB_r_TBTF's picture

"a bit larger", lol


"Should an object of that size hit Earth, it would cause a blast with the energy equivalent of about 2.4 million tons — or 2.4 megatons — of TNT explosives, more than 180 times the power of the atomic blast that leveled Hiroshima."

ElvisDog's picture

Okay, here you go. Assuming the meteor is spherical with a radius of 50 yards and made of pure iron, it would have a mass of about 117000000 kg. If if impacted at 7.8 km/s it would release 3.6e+15 Joules of energy, which is equivalent to a little less than a 1 megaton nuclear device (or approx 60 Hiroshima nukes). So, yes, it would be more than Hiroshima but a 1 megaton nuclear bomb is still not the end of the world.

BooMushroom's picture

Pardon me while I get my tinfoil hat on...

How about if it hits Washington DC? Or if it hits a mile offshore from DC, New York, Manhattan, etc.? What if it hits Senuaku Island ;)

How about if someone's computers interpret it as a nuclear attack on their country, and retaliates automatically?

How about it hits a nuclear power plant/waste dump, dead on? How about Hoover Dam? Lots of places it could cause some major issues.

Odds of any of those things is essentially zero, but so are the odds of any two particular objects in space colliding, right?

Parrotile's picture

You may need to revise your atmospheric impact speed upwards. The observed distribution is between 10 and 70 km/sec, so the mean would be 35km/sec.

The "surface impact velocity" ignores the fact that ALL the energy (kinetic and potential - remember it's also affected by the planetary gravity) will be absorbed in our global system. Localised atmospheric heating will certainly be significant, and will contribute to the net overall effect. As to the magnitude of the final effect, far too many variables to provide real info, however the Tunguska event has been guesstimated as being caused by a 100 metre diameter comet.

Mind you, seeing as we all have to go someday, it would be a far more interesting demise than being stuck in a Residential Home.

Peachfuzz's picture

sort of like the earthquake/tsunami in Fukushima? That kind of regional?