A scientist presented a couple of extreme solutions to prevent an asteroid from colliding with Earth. Aside from ramming the space rock, the scientist said that painting the asteroid could save Earth from a major impact event.

Former NASA director Pete Worden, who currently serves as the advisor on space resources for the small European country of Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, noted that agencies from around the globe have adopted various contingency plans in an event of an impending asteroid impact.

Many of these plans revolve around pushing the asteroid away from a direct collision with Earth. Worden noted that ramming an asteroid with a spacecraft will work as long as the operation is carried out in advance. This will give the asteroid enough time to move to its new path away from the planet.

“The thing is, if you move something years in advance, you don’t have to move it very much,” Worden told ABC News. “This is a rock that’s the size of a skyscraper. You would then hit it with a spacecraft kind of the size of a small car, and by impacting it, it impacts energy and momentum and will move it slightly off its orbit.”

Aside from ramming asteroids with a spacecraft, agencies are also looking into developing a giant laser that will be mounted on an orbiting satellite. Like the first plan, the laser will also be used to nudge an asteroid away from Earth.

In addition to these solutions, Worden also discussed the possibility of painting asteroids in order to prevent it from colliding with Earth. According to the space expert, this plan involves spray painting a patch on one side of the asteroid.

The idea behind this concept is that when sunlight hits the asteroid, the painted patch will be heated up differently compared to the rest of the space rock. The variation in the temperature on the asteroid’s surface could affect how it spins, which would then change its trajectory.

Worden presented these ideas a few days after a massive asteroid dubbed by NASA as potentially hazardous flew past Earth.