What Nuking An Earth-Killing Asteroid Looks Like

You might think Armageddon was just a lot of Bruce Willis sobbing and Aerosmith-fuelled sex, but there was actually some truth in there! If an enormous space rock ever heads our way, we're already planning on nuking it to hell.

The bright nuclear minds at Los Alamos National Laboratory aren't finished coming up with novel ways to blow things up. Right now, they're using a 32,000-processor rig to simulate a nuclear attack against an incoming asteroid. Above, a one megaton "nuclear energy source" (warhead) hits the Itokawa asteroid -- half a kilometre wide. And good news! The blast and subsequent shockwave would be enough to "mitigate" the rock's threat to our tiny planet. Which means it wouldn't kill us all, right? Why don't we bump it up to two megatons, gents. [Los Alamos]