Monday, March 27

Don’t Look Up: 5 worrying ideas raised by the new Netflix film | Digital Trends Spanish

One of the movies most awaited by Netflix users was Don’t look up, in particular for the outstanding cast that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett and Jonah Hill, among others.

Although the plot of the film is not original (a comet will impact the Earth and the United States assumes the difficult task of deflecting it), the incorporation in the history of elements of the scientific field make it an interesting proposal that invites us to reflect on our planet.

One of the great differences of this film, compared to others of the same genre, is that it gives greater relevance to scientists and astronomers. For the same reason, many have wondered how true some of the elements that appear in history can be.

Impact probability

According to the European Space Agency, comets are primitive objects in the solar system that formed about 4.6 billion years ago.

In Don’t Look Up, a 15-kilometer comet is heading toward Earth. It is named after Kate Dibiasky, the astronomer who discovered it. What is the probability that one of these bodies will fall on our planet?

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) defines a category of space bodies called Near-Earth Objects (NEO). A comet or asteroid is considered a NEO when it is about 50 million kilometers from Earth’s orbit.

As of December of this year, NASA has recorded about 28,000 NEOS since 1980. Of these, 117 are comets and the rest are asteroids.

Just over 2,200 of these objects were classified as Potentially Hazardous Asteroids, as they passed within 4.7 million kilometers of Earth’s orbit and were greater than 140 meters in size.

No one:
Me explaining to my relatives why all Netflix series are connected.

& mdash; Netflix Latin America (@NetflixLAT) December 24, 2021

According to NASA, every “several hundred thousand years” an object larger than one kilometer could hit Earth. For now, the agency explains that “no known asteroids present a significant risk of impact with Earth in the next hundred years.”

The highest risk is due to an asteroid called 2009 FD, which in 2185 will have less than 0.2 percent chance of colliding with our planet.

Therefore, and according to science, the scenario posed Don’t look up it can occur, although it is highly unlikely.

Incompetent authorities

Another of the central elements that the film directed by Adam McKay reveals is the scant preparation on the part of the United States authorities in the face of such a threat, in addition to the attitude of contempt towards scientists.

The film shows that, faced with a problem of this magnitude, what is required is that all those involved work together and that there is no contempt for any point of view.

An example of this is the denial attitude that some leaders have had in the face of the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused an increase in the number of infections and deaths, despite warnings from the scientific world.


Perhaps the most important lesson is that the role of science cannot be relativized in the face of an emergency that affects the entire world.

Is there a contingency plan?

The world’s leading aerospace agencies have offices that constantly monitor NEOS.

Their job is to detect the presence of an object relatively close to Earth, anticipate its trajectory and evaluate the consequences of an eventual impact.

In November this year, NASA and ESA launched the DART spacecraft, the first mission to deflect an asteroid.

Your objective is to collide with the asteroid Dimorphos and change its course. Although it is a body that poses no threat to Earth, mission managers want to put the technology to the test and assess whether they will one day be able to use this method to deflect the path of a dangerous asteroid.


Scientists have also considered the use of nuclear explosives, although they are emphatic in pointing out that this should be considered as the last resort.

Asteroids “millionaires”

In the film, the attitude of the United States government changes radically when they learn that Comet Dibiasky is rich in a large amount of resources and minerals that could be exploited by them.

This is so real it’s scary. In December, the asteroid Nereus passed 3.9 million kilometers from Earth. The object is 330 meters tall and is considered one of the most profitable asteroids, with a value close to $ 5 billion in precious metals.

These types of objects usually contain metals such as iron, nickel, platinum and gold, which could be used to generate rocket fuel and build certain structures in space.

Therefore, the idea of ​​exploring one of these bodies to see if its resources can be extracted does not seem to be so far-fetched.


Against time

According to experts, it is impossible that in six months (the period proposed by the film) humanity will have the necessary technology to detect an event of this type and organize a mission to space to stop it.

Furthermore, objects that are not considered that large can only be perceived when they are very close to Earth.

Finally, experts warn that resorting to the same procedure used in the film to destroy the comet is very dangerous, since its proximity to our planet could allow some fragments of considerable size to end up on Earth.

You can see Don’t look up In the following link:

Don’t Look Up on Netflix