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Meet the Class of 2025: Faizaan Firoz

Faizaan Firoz (Pardee’25) of Mombasa, Kenya, had a heart issue that resulted in emergency surgery when he was a baby, leaving one of his vocal cords paralyzed and his voice hoarse. Despite this, Firoz had a love of public speaking and used Model UN and theater to overcome bullying at school because of how he sounded. Photo by Cydney Scott

Student Profile

Meet the Class of 2025: Faizaan Firoz Challenges can’t keep this student from Kenya from finding his voice

Faizaan Firoz loves to talk. Zooming from his bedroom in a suburb of Mombasa, Kenya, recently, he waxes enthusiastic about Boston, BU, Billie Eilish, and the gyro combo platter at The Halal Guys on Stuart Street, among many other things.

But talking hasn’t always been easy for Firoz (Pardee’25), a third-generation Kenyan whose family roots are in India.

“When I was six months old, I was diagnosed with a VSD [ventricular septal defect], which in layman’s terms is a hole in my heart,” he says. “My parents used a lot of their savings and rushed me to India for surgery. It was successful, but one of my vocal cords was damaged and became paralyzed.”

He grew up with a breathy, hoarse, wheezy voice that made him a target of bullies. “People asked me why wasn’t I normal, why didn’t I have a normal voice,” he says. “I started to love public speaking, but everyone at school discouraged me. They said there was no way someone with my voice could get up on stage and talk and anyone would listen to me. Back then my voice was a lot worse. I was told it would scare off the audience!”

He can laugh about it now, but not when he was younger. “That was when I was eight or nine, and that really broke my heart at the time,” he says. “But I kept on persisting.” 

When he reached seventh grade, Firoz joined his school’s Model United Nations (MUN). “At my first conference I got up to speak, and the entire assembly of 500 people laughed at me because of my voice,” he says. “That was the lowest point in confidence that I had. I ran off the stage crying and locked myself in the bathroom and refused to come out for one or two days. But my mom explained to me that having good ideas matters more than having a good voice. And she told me that my ideas were really powerful.”

Firoz’s voice issues didn’t keep him from rising in Model UN. Here he’s speaking at a Model UN event at his school in a Mombasa suburb. Photo courtesy of Faizaan Firoz

He decided he could use his voice to speak for people who had no voice, people fleeing war and persecution and facing human rights abuses. “I could channel that anger into fighting for people who had no voice, and so I went back to MUN and slowly started introducing resolutions that dealt with refugee rights, child exploitation, people who are fleeing wars and environmental catastrophes, sexual violence, child marriages—I went further ahead and became secretary general of my school’s club.”

No surprise then that he is looking forward to studying international relations at the Pardee School of Global Studies, although he’s also interested in performing in theater.

The pandemic “is quite tough where I am, because the Delta variant is spreading quite fast, and in Kenya we have much, much lower rates of vaccination,” he says. “Like 1 or 2 percent are fully vaccinated. There are curfews and a lot of restrictions. Not a lot of people take it seriously, but that’s how it is.”

Today, Firoz’s voice is distinctive, but you would not immediately think there was a problem. “I’ve done a lot of speech therapy,” he says. “They basically tell me to breathe with my stomach and talk in this very calm, relaxed manner.”

Issues with his heart and vocal cord aren’t the only medical problems he has faced. He also has blue rubber bleb nevus syndrome, a rare blood vessel disorder that causes large, soft lesions. His most noticeable one basically resembled a double chin—but on only one side of his neck. That brought him to Boston in 2023 for a medical consult and again in 2023 for corrective surgery.

“I fell in love with the city, with the fact that it’s so young, so diverse, you have so many students there. I absolutely love that,” he says. “I love the green spaces, like the Boston Common. It just felt right.”

Firoz’s strong academic record and social conscience helped him get admitted to several top US colleges. He chose BU, he says, in part because a Presidential Scholarship provided financial support, but also because of the reception he got during the Zoom admissions process.

“We talked about his interest in international relations and all the work he has done already as a high school student in Mombasa,” Dave says. “He’s very involved in model UN and had a very specific career path in mind already. He wanted to talk about the best path to maximize his four years and how do you get the most out of BU. That’s what I was impressed by from the beginning.

“He just wants to try to soak everything in and truly experience as much as he can,” she says.

An only child, Firoz’s full name is Faizaan Firoz Abdulshakur Alimohamed. His other interests include TV and video, notably the series Suits and the YouTube travel vlogs of Eva zu Beck. “She has this saying that the world belongs to the brave, and I think that is so true. If you want to do something, you’ll not get it by sitting home, by being scared and asking questions like, ‘what if…?’” he says. “You have to go out there and get it. I want to leave a mark, and I really identify with that.”

He may have grown up in a different place than most of his classmates, but music is truly an international language. “Currently I am obsessed with the new Billie Eilish album,” he says. “It’s crazy how she’s so talented at 19 years of age. It’s scary how good she could get.”

Firoz also pronounces himself “a total foodie,” which brings us back to The Halal Guys, which he discovered on one of those earlier medical visits to Boston. He says he’s sure he would be tempted to go straight there when he landed at Logan Airport in late August.

“My favorite Halal Guys dish is the combo gyro platter, which comes with a little of everything, meat, chicken, salad, as well all the toppings,” he says, his expression growing a little dreamy. “The reason I like that is because I believe that that platter is a perfect representation of life. Life is a bit sweet, a bit spicy, a little bitter, but you can’t appreciate one flavor without the other, and the amalgamation of all these flavors is what makes the Halal Guys worth eating—and life worth living!”

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Here’s Who Bu Invited To Join The Class Of 2026

Here’s Who BU Invited to Join the Class of 2026

For the first time in two years, Admissions is holding in-person open houses for admitted students, which began March 28 and continue throughout April on Fridays and Saturdays. Photo by Janice Checchio

Admissions

Here’s Who BU Invited to Join the Class of 2026 With 80,794 students applying for 3,100 openings, the University’s acceptance rate was 14 percent

Among those invited to join BU’s Class of 2026 are a student who developed an app to detect Parkinson’s disease in facial photographs, another who interned on the upcoming Star Wars installment Rogue Squadron, and a third who launched a peer tutoring program to combat a school’s dropout rate.

The Class of 2026 stands to be BU’s strongest ever, with just 14 percent of a record 80,794 applicants admitted to a class of 3,100 freshmen. 

Kelly Walter (Wheelock’81), dean of admissions and associate vice president for enrollment, says this year’s admittance rate was four points lower than the Class of 2025, and it reflects the ever-increasing competition for admission to BU. “The academic strength and diversity of the applicant pool positioned us to admit the strongest class in BU’s history,” Walter says. 

And that’s saying something. Over the past decade, BU’s admittance rate has dropped from 46 percent in 2012 to 14 percent in this year’s admissions season.

The students accepted to the Class of 2026 come from the top 6 percent of their high school class, with a 3.95 grade point average and an SAT of 1491 and an ACT of 34. But it’s worth noting that only 54 percent of applicants submitted their standardized test scores, since BU joined many schools in making the SAT and ACT standardized-test-optional again this year. Admissions officials believe this accounts for why colleges across the country are seeing record-breaking numbers of applications—BU received 6.7 percent more applicants this year than last year. 

Aside from applicants wanting to attend BU because of its location (Boston is one of the biggest college towns in the country, after all), students’ top reason for applying to the University is “our strong reputation for academic excellence and a rigorous academic curriculum,” Walter says, citing diverse opportunities outside the classroom, like internships, BU Study Abroad, and the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP). The next reason they cited is BU’s excellent ranking in national surveys. Walter says students also seek out BU for its “high job placement rates and strong relationships with employers, as well as our commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion as important factors in their college choice.”

High school senior Tuva Kateraas, who was among the 50 percent of the class who was accepted via early decision, cites the reasons above for why she chose to attend BU. But an in-person visit during last fall’s (delayed) 2023 Commencement ceremony on Nickerson Field confirmed her choice. “Having that gut feeling of knowing that BU was the right place for me when I walked on campus—so cliché, I know—and imagining myself in that red cap and gown, following the paths of those students next year, was so thrilling,” she says. “Ultimately, I applied to BU early decision because I knew that even if I got into any of the other schools I applied to, I would still choose BU.”  

This year’s accepted students come from all over the country and the globe: 24 percent are international students, hailing from 87 countries; domestically, students come from all 50 states plus Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam, and the US Virgin Islands. Walter says that 21 percent of the students admitted are from underrepresented groups, and approximately 13 percent are first-generation college students.   

Students have until May 1 to notify BU that they will attend.

Learn The Inetaddress Class Member Functions

Introduction to Java InetAddress

Web development, programming languages, Software testing & others

The InetAddress class in java is built in java.net.InetAddress package of java.

The InetAddress class can be used to get any host’s IP address like chúng tôi chúng tôi and all. The commonly used IP address is IPv4 for “version 4”. Consider an example of an IP address which might look like as –

65.172.248.170

The above address contains four numbers, and each number consists of three digits separated by ‘.’ (single dot). The range for each of the four numbers is from 0 to 255.

InetAddress class member Functions

The InetAddress class does not contain any constructor but contains some function as anInetAddress class member function.

public static InetAddressgetByName(String host) – This static function returns the object of InetAddress of the host specified. Where the parameter host is specified hostname.

public static InetAddress[] getAllByName(String host) – This static function returns an array of InetAddress object of the host specified.

public static InetAddressgetLoopbackAddress() – This static function returns the object of InetAddress of type loopback.

public static InetAddressgetLocalHost() throws UnknownHostException – This static function returns the object of InetAddress of the localhost.

public byte[] getAddress() – This function returns an IP address of InetAddress object as an array. Array store ip address in order of bytes appears as in IP address.

public String getHostAddress() – This function returns IP address in string format.

public boolean isReachable(int timeout)throws IOException – This function returns true if the IP address is reachable, whereas the timeout parameter specifies the time after that the call is to be abort and result in a false value.

public boolean isReachable(NetworkInterfacenetif, intttl, int timeout) throws IOException – This function is overloaded of isReachable() function. Where netif represents the network interface to be used to check reachability, ttl represents before exiting the network the number of hops the echo packet makes, and as the timeout parameter specifies the time after that, the call is to be abort.

public String getHostName() – This function returns the hostname of IP Address.

public String getCanonicalHostName() – This function returns the fully qualified domain name of the IP address.

public String toString() – This function represents an IP address in the string format.

public boolean isAnyLocalAddress()– This function returns true if InetAddress object address is a local address.

public boolean isLinkLocalAddress() – This function returns true if InetAddress object address is a link-local address.

public boolean isLoopbackAddress() – This function returns true if the InetAddress object address is a loopback address.

public boolean isMCGloabal() – This function returns true if the IP multicast address has global scope.

public boolean isMCLinkLocal() – This function returns true if the IP multicast address has link scope.

public boolean isMCNodeLocal() – This function returns true if IP multicast address has node scope.

public boolean isMCOrgLoacal() – This function returns true if the IP multicast address has organization scope.

public boolean isMCSiteLocal() – This function returns true if IP multicast address has site scope.

public boolean isMulticastAddress() – This function returns true if the IP address is a multicast address, whose first four bits are 1110.

public boolean isSiteLocalAddress()– This function returns true if IPaddress is a site-local address.

public int hashCode() – This function returns IP address hashcode.

public boolean equals(Object obj) – This function returns true if the IP address is the same as the passed IP address.

Examples for the InetAddress class in java

Next, we write the java code to understand the InetAddress class more clearly with the following example where we create an InetAddress object by using the URL and some of the function in this object which discusses above –

Example #1

Code:

import java.io.IOException; import java.util.Arrays; import java.net.InetAddress; public class Demo { public static void main( String[] arg) throws IOException { byte addr[] = { 65, 2, 0, 1}; System.out.print("iptoString : " + ip.toString()); System.out.println("IP Address"); for (InetAddress add:ips) System.out.println(add.getHostAddress()); System.out.print("ngetByName : " + ip); System.out.print("ngetByAddress : " +InetAddress.getByAddress(addr)); System.out.print("ngetLocalHost : " +InetAddress.getLocalHost()); System.out.print("ngetLoopbackAddress : " +InetAddress.getLoopbackAddress()); System.out.print("nip address isReachable : " +ip.isReachable(50)); System.out.print("nip address hostname :" +ip.getHostName()); System.out.print("nip address CanonicalHostname : " + ip.getCanonicalHostName()); } }

Output:

Example #2

Code:

import java.net.Inet4Address; import java.util.Arrays; import java.net.InetAddress; public class Demo { public static void main(String[] arg) throws Exception { byte addr[]={68, 5, 2, 12}; System.out.println("ip : "+ip); System.out.print("nip1 : "+ip1); InetAddress ip2 =  InetAddress.getByAddress(addr); System.out.print("nip2 : "+ip2); System.out.print("nAddress : " +Arrays.toString(ip.getAddress())); System.out.print("nHost Address : " +ip.getHostAddress()); System.out.print("nisAnyLocalAddress : " +ip.isAnyLocalAddress()); System.out.print("nisLinkLocalAddress : " +ip.isLinkLocalAddress()); System.out.print("nisLoopbackAddress : " +ip.isLoopbackAddress()); System.out.print("nisMCGlobal : " +ip.isMCGlobal()); System.out.print("nisMCLinkLocal : " +ip.isMCLinkLocal()); System.out.print("nisMCNodeLocal : " +ip.isMCNodeLocal()); System.out.print("nisMCOrgLocal : " +ip.isMCOrgLocal()); System.out.print("nisMCSiteLocal : " +ip.isMCSiteLocal()); System.out.print("nisMulticastAddress : " +ip.isMulticastAddress()); System.out.print("nisSiteLocalAddress : " +ip.isSiteLocalAddress()); System.out.print("nhashCode : " +ip.hashCode()); System.out.print("n Is ip1 == ip2 : " +ip.equals(ip2)); } }

Output:

Conclusion

The InetAddress is a built-in class in java that is available in the java.net.InetAddress package. It is used to specify the IP address of the machine in a network. The above method, which we discussed, can be used to get more information regarding an IP address.

Recommended Articles

This is a guide to Java InetAddress. Here we discuss the InetAddress class member Functions and Examples along with the codes and outputs. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –

Wd Under Pressure From Class

There has been a story rumbling in the background over the past month that hard drive manufacturers Western Digital (WD), Toshiba and Seagate have been shipping storage using SMR technology –  a technique that increases drive capacity at the cost of speed for the end-user, while reducing their own manufacture costs.

The fact that these companies have not been mentioning this fact in their marketing and product specs has caused a bit of a storm as customers realized they may have been getting a product that was much slower than they could reasonably expect, all to seemingly save a little bit of cash for the manufacturer.

Not surprisingly the claws of the law are now reaching out to get them and two class-action lawsuits have been filed against WD, and presumably, we can expect similar against Seagate and Toshiba in the coming days.

Hattis & Lukacs, a class-action law-firm who have previously settled suits against Dell and McAfee have been busy sourcing plaintiffs for the suit.

Top Class Actions has also filed a similar action in Canada in a sign that this could be about to become a more serious problem for WD than just bad PR after seemingly being caught out.

SMR tech (Shingled Magnetic Recording)  overlaps tracks on the hard drives to increase capacity, but at the same time reduces costs. The trade-off for the customer is they then end up with a drive that is, in certain circumstances anywhere from 13 to 16 times slower.

Obviously, that doesn’t sound great in the PR specs so it seems to have been left out, leaving purchasers to end up with a product that could be viewed as hobbled to save costs compared to a more traditional CMR drive.

Western Digital has been busy sounding apologetic to mitigate the bad press and recently released a list of all drives that use the slower recording technology. A little late in the day perhaps but at least we all now know.

The thing about all this is that some customers would not care about the slower speeds and would prefer a higher capacity drive at a good price, but by choosing, for whatever reason, not to disclose the issue has left them open to the courts. It also doesn’t look great that all three manufacturers haven’t chosen to share the information that they were using SMR technology.

This is unlikely to just go away even with WD now offering to replace drives for some customers, telling tech website Tom’s Hardware: “Western Digital reviews customer service requests on a case-by-case basis.  As with all such requests, including product replacement requests, the determination depends on a variety of factors, including the product type, the issue reported, and the applicable warranty.”

The whole affair is wildly complicated and it appears companies have been introducing the SMR technology into ranges that have previously been marketing as high-end. From the second the specification wasn’t added to the marketing however it was only ever going to end up in court with a bunch of angry customers feeling they had been misled. Let this be a lesson learned.

Meet Bu’s New Falcon Chicks

Meet BU’s New Falcon Chicks StuVi II home to birds of prey

The brood of chicks consists of two males and one female. Photos by Mike Spencer

A pair of local BU parents is preparing to become empty nesters. Literally.

We’re talking about the family of peregrine falcons that reside high atop BU’s 26-story StuVi II. Last month, three chicks hatched and took their first flights last week, and soon will begin hunting their own pigeons and rats and looking for new quarters.

BU’s peregrine falcon family was fathered by “Zorro,” whose comings and goings have been closely documented by a community of passionate local bird watchers since 2010. He was formerly spotted at Boston’s Children’s Hospital, along with an unidentified female partner and chicks. Two years later, he was spotted again, this time on a StuVi II ledge, possibly with the same female, and with two new chicks.

In early June, local bird enthusiast David Gates noticed that the parents had three new chicks, a big deal since peregrine falcons are still considered endangered in Massachusetts. Last fall, however, the state’s Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (MassWildlife) and the Fisheries and Wildlife Board recommended the birds’ status be changed to “threatened” because of an increased number of falcon nesting pairs in the state.

After his discovery, Gates reported the news to MassWildlife, noting that the now seven-year-old Zorro was the proud father. MassWildlife sent out a team to band and carefully examine the new family members, and BU Today was invited, along with several local falcon enthusiasts, to witness the event.

Before going out onto the StuVi II roof, Tom French, MassWildlife Natural Heritage and Endangered Species program assistant director, warned the group to be careful. “I want to go quietly up to the box so I can catch the chicks,” he said. “Sometimes the parents are very aggressive.” Out on the roof, the group could hear the adult falcons’ cries and see them circling anxiously overhead. “Don’t worry, that’s just normal behavior from mom and dad when anyone comes to band their chicks,” assured local birder Ursula Goodine.

The fastest flying birds in the world, peregrine falcons can dive at a speed of 200 miles per hour. Goodine and crew stood on lookout and held up a broom to ward off the parents from diving and attacking French as he scooped up the chicks. French was hoping to catch the mother with a net and band her, too.

The group stood under an awning while French quietly approached the nest. He explained that falcons don’t build traditional nests, and in nature often nest on cliffs. With BU’s permission, in 2013 French had placed a box on the side of StuVi II, hoping that if Zorro and his companion returned to nest, the box would help protect the nest and eggs from the elements. It wasn’t until this year that the falcons used the box for their newly hatched chicks.

Next, he carefully reached for three of the bags and took out a chick from each. With their gray faces, yellow feet, and fuzzy white bodies, they resembled Furby toys. Not yet able to fly, they stood, quietly at first, a few inches high, then began lightly squawking and hopping.

“Even as chicks, it’s amazing how deep they can dig their talons in,” French said as he picked each one up carefully to fit a metal band around its leg. MassWildlife bands as many peregrine chicks as possible each year, which involves fitting a small metal tag with unique state and federal numbers around the bird’s leg. The identification numbers help scientists track birds’ migration, age, population growth, reproductive status, and more, he said. The bands are “field readable,” meaning that a bird watcher can read the numbers using binoculars and then record them to keep track of each individual bird. That’s how Gates was able to identify Zorro as the father of the current brood.

Timing is critical. “If we waited another week we couldn’t do this—they’d be all over me,” French said as he secured the bands. He estimated that the chicks were about three-and-a-half weeks old. “Feathers are incased, blood feathers, dandruff is sheath,” he announced, as a coworker recorded his observations. “I want this banding to be right, because once it’s on there, it’s on for life,” and with that, he secured the metal rings around each bird’s leg. A quick examination told him that there were two males and one female.

After some photos were taken, French placed each bird back in its bag and returned them to the safety of the nest. The parents continued to swoop and squawk overhead until the visitors left.

The three chicks have been on “fledge watch” for the last few weeks, and finally took their first, tentative flights on June 29. Occasionally, chicks can land on the ground or get stuck, and if that happens, members of the BU community are asked to call MassWildlife for assistance.

BU has been home to other wildlife over the years: bats, skunks, opossums, raccoons, wild turkeys, and hawks. Nearby neighborhoods have on occasion reported sightings of coyotes, deer, and even a black bear.

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Flying Up To Meet Asteroids

Partly to help explain solar eclipses, the ancient Egyptians had a story about the serpent god Apep, the Uncreator, who tried to swallow the sun god Ra as he crossed the sky.

Apep — the Greeks called him Apophis — personified death, destruction and chaos. His opponent was the goddess Ma’at, who represented all that was light and truth.

Now, a group of NASA scientists is hoping Ma’at will once again help humans ward off the harbinger of destruction.

The MAAT satellite — Measurement and Analysis of Apophis Trajectory, a conveniently descriptive acronym — is still just an idea. But if it’s built, the modestly priced probe could help illuminate one of the solar system’s most famous and most misunderstood asteroids.

A few months after its discovery in June 2004, asteroid 99942 Apophis was briefly thought to pose a serious threat to Earth in either 2029 or 2036. But further calculations showed it is unlikely to hit the planet, unless it passes through a gravitational “keyhole” that might send it swinging Earthward seven years after its initial visit.

This would be bad, explained David Morrison, director of the Lunar Science Institute at NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif.

Apophis is about 1,000 feet across and roughly the size of a 25-story building. The 1908 Tunguska meteoroid, which caused a massive fireball and flattened a forest in Siberia, was about 10 times smaller and about 1,000 times weaker in terms of energy. “Where Tunguska would have destroyed a city, something like Apophis is rather worse. It would ruin your whole day,” Morrison said. “That’s big enough to destroy a state in the U.S., or a small country. It’s not something that you would want to sit back and (ignore).”

Thankfully, Apophis is not likely to hit Earth, but it’s worth studying because it comes so close and there are many other asteroids like it, Morrison said.

It does seem like a good starting point for missions to understand these sub-kilometer asteroids,” he said.

As of Saturday, March 21, there were 6,163 known near-Earth asteroids, about 770 of which are a dangerous half-mile in diameter or wider, according to the Near Earth Object Office at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Their paths around the sun occasionally bring them across Earth’s orbit. With enough warning — and so long as we know about the asteroid’s existence, we’d have some warning — humans could send a spacecraft to a threatening rock and kick it away by slightly altering its trajectory.

The MAAT probe would be designed to match Apophis’ orbit and tell us if we need to move it. More cost studies are needed before NASA has a price tag, but Morrison said the mission is intended to be relatively inexpensive, around $100 million. It will piggyback onto a satellite going up to a geosynchronous orbit, about 18,000 to 22,000 miles above Earth, and continue until it hooks up with the asteroid. It won’t land or crash, unlike previous asteroid missions such as Deep Impact, but it will shed some light on the space rock by flying in formation with it.

It would carry several cameras, a radio system and a laser range system to measure the distance between MAAT and Apophis so scientists can determine the asteroid’s mass and trajectory. “If we ever face one that will hit us, the first question they are going to ask is its trajectory. It’s only in Hollywood that asteroids change orbit. Once you determine the orbit carefully, then you can predict where it will be in the future,” Morrison said.

Scientists hope a refined understanding of Apophis’ path around the sun will erase lingering worries about its odds of striking Earth. “It would be nice to have a press conference and tell you for sure it’s not going to happen,” Morrison said.

The number was soon revised down after a flurry of observations; as of now, the chances of Apophis hitting Earth in 2029 are about 1 in 45,000. In 2029, it will pass within about 18,000 miles of Earth, well within the range of geosynchronous satellites, but scientists at JPL say its trajectory won’t endanger the satellites.

That’s where it gets interesting, however. Earth’s gravity will dramatically affect Apophis’ orbit, leaving scientists to estimate where it will end up next.

If Apophis passes at 18,893 miles above Earth, it will pass through a gravitational “keyhole” about half a mile wide, which would nudge it just enough to send it on a course for collision with Earth seven years later, on April 13, 2036. MAAT will provide more data to check these estimates and tell us whether we should do something to move Apophis from that keyhole using a solar sail, some added weight or a space tugboat of sorts. It’s also a way to test a type of asteroid- tracker that might be really important someday.

We don’t know exactly where Apophis is going to go, but it’s very unlikely that it will end up on an impact trajectory,” Morrison said. “But it is a prototype of the type of object that we might have to deal with.”

Scientists at JPL are confident further observation will show Apophis will pass about 49 million miles from Earth on April 13, 2036, which happens to be Easter Sunday.

That date is one of many numerological coincidences that have helped make the asteroid famous: For one thing, Apophis is Near Earth Object 99942 — 999 upside down is 666, the “number of the beast,” a number associated with the end-times prophecy in the New Testament chapter Revelation. It is expected to pass Earth the first time on April 13, 2029 — a Friday the 13th. What’s more, 2 + 0 + 2 + 9 = 13.

Feeling unlucky yet? Maybe the probe named for goodness and light will be able to help illuminate this dark nomad of the sky.

Near-Earth Asteroid Talk

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