The asteroid Apophis had already been discovered by researchers in 2004. Now a change in the asteroid's trajectory has been detected.
If this asteroid maintains its current trajectory, it could collide with Earth in 2068, unless our protective layer stops this asteroid.
A chunk of rock, 370 metres long, could now cause a collision with Earth along this altered trajectory.
What was initially completely ruled out could now become a reality. It could collide with Earth in 'just' 47 years, although no researchers can yet say that this trajectory will persist.
NASA, as well as Europe's ESA, may have the first serious case of a recent attempt to divert a comet or asteroid heading for Earth from its chosen path by targeting a satellite and sending it back into space.
Its impact would be 18 times more powerful than the best-known nuclear explosion to date.