Tesla Roadster may crash back into Earth, but not so soon

SpaceX launched Elon Musk’s Tesla Roadster in space as a payload on Falcon Heavy rocket which created a history. The Tesla was sent on an elliptical Mars orbit which could last for a probable billion years. But there have been talks that this Tesla might actually come crashing into the Earth, when it passes by in the year 2020.

In a study by Orbital Dynamics Expert Hanno Rein, Daniel Tamayo and David Vokrouhlicky, they outlined the real probability and chances of this Tesla crashing into Earth. The research paper is titled “The random walk of cars and their collision probabilities with planets” and the scientists highlighted that chances of this event are really minute, actually only 6 percent.

This car will go on orbiting around the Mars for about another million years and then maybe crash into anything.


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Lead author of the study, Mr Rein, said: “Earth is the most likely place the car will crash, followed by Venus, and then the sun.” According to the expert, the Roadster will come “relatively close” to its home planet every 30 years, and its trajectory will shift slightly every time.

The Roadster is expected to make its next close encounter with Earth in 2091, when it approaches at a distance similar to that between the planet and its moon.


At its farthest distance from Earth, the roadster will be 1.67 times Earth’s distance from the sun.

The three researchers from the University of Toronto ran countless simulations to come to the conclusion that there is a 6 percent chance of the Roadster crashing into Earth and a 2.5 percent chance of hitting Venus.

Mr Rein said:


We’ve not seen any single collision with Mars in 240 simulations, though we continue to run them and see what happens. The likely outcome is that it will crash, in tens of millions of years, into Earth or Venus or the sun.