147-foot asteroid 2023 HW5 nearing Earth today; NASA reveals its speed, distance, more

A massive asteroid 147 foot in diameter is on its way to make a close approach to planet Earth today. Here is what NASA has revealed about it.

| Updated on: Apr 29 2023, 11:53 IST
Best NASA Astronomy Pictures of the Week: Geomagnetic storms, Tarantula Nebula and more
Medulla Nebula Supernova Remnant
1/5 The Medulla Nebula Supernova Remnant (April 24) - It is CTB-1, also known as the Medulla Nebula Supernova Remnant. It is a rare cosmic bubble and the remnant of an ancient supernova explosion that occurred about 10000 years ago, according to NASA. The Medulla Nebula Supernova Remnant is given the name because of its brain-like shape and is located towards the constellation of Cassiopeia. (NASA/Kimberly Sibbald)
2/5 Geomagnetic Storm sparks Auroras (April 25) - Stunning auroras sparked by the G4-class geomagnetic storm were captured from Caceres, Spain. But it wasn’t just Spain where the auroras were visible. According to a report by spaceweather.com, the stunning streaks of light were seen lighting up the sky in Europe, in several parts of the U.S., New Zealand and as far as south of France.  (NASA/Landon Moeller)
Full Moon
3/5 Full Moon shot through Arc de Triomphe (April 26) - This captured image is a fascinating snapshot of the full Moon through the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France. The amount of Moon we see changes over the month, which is known as the lunar phases, and there are 8 in total - New Moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full Moon, waning gibbous, third quarter and waning crescent Moon. (Stefano Zanarello/NASA)
Tarantula Nebula
4/5 The fascinating Tarantula Nebula (April 27) - is the 30 Doradus, also known as the Tarantula Nebula, located about 160,000 light-years away towards the constellation of Dorado. The 30 Doradus is also called the Tarantula Nebula because of its glowing filaments which resemble spider legs, according to NASA. The Nebula is special as it can be seen in the Southern sky with the naked eye. It resembles a large milky patch of stars when viewed from Earth. (NASA/SuperBIT)
runaway star Alpha Camelopardalis
5/5 Runaway star Alpha Camelopardalis (April 28) - It is a snapshot of Alpha Camelopardalis, a runaway star located about 4,000 light-years away in the long-necked constellation Camelopardalis. According to NASA, this star is moving through space at a rapid speed of about 60 kilometers per second. In fact, this star is about 25-30 times the size of our Sun and over 500,000 times brighter! NASA has also revealed that Alpha Camelopardalis is 5 times hotter than our Sun, with a temperature of about 30,000 Kelvin. (NASA/Andre Vilhena)
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Here is all you need to know about the asteroid 2023 HW5. (Pixabay)

We don't get to know about all the space objects that fly close to planet Earth. Though NASA does reveal information about spectacular celestial events taking place in space, like planet Jupiter being seen alongside various other planets in the night sky and other activities taking place in space, but details regarding other objects are mostly not widely dispensed to the general public. However, the US space agency does make sure that people are informed of certain threats like asteroids approaching Earth. It provides all the details like size, distance to Earth, speed, and more. Now, according to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), two gigantic asteroids are travelling towards planet Earth today, April 29, 2023.

Asteroid 2023 HW5

According to CNEOS, the asteroid 2023 HW5 some 147-foot in diameter is all set to make a close approach to planet Earth today. As per the information, the exact size of the asteroid is not yet known. The asteroid will come as close as 6052871 kilometers to Earth and is travelling at a rapid speed of 31536 kilometers per hour.

Other than this, another asteroid named 2023 HC4, having a diameter of anything between 15 meter and 33 m too will pass by Earth today. It is travelling at a speed of 21276 kilometers per hour and will make a close approach to the planet at a distance of 4151500 kilometers.

Will these asteroids be dangerous to the planet? No, not all the objects in outer space nearing Earth, including asteroids, pose a threat to the planet. The only time of concern will be when these objects are too large and the chances of their collision with planet Earth is very high. In the case of these asteroids, the danger is not serious even though they will be getting too close to Earth for comfort.

In order to stay alert and be prepared to avoid the incidents and situations of collision, NASA keeps an eye on the movement of asteroids, their speed, how close they will come to Earth, and more. The research organisation uses its telescopes and observatories like NEOWISE to track and study asteroids. It also uses a variety of ground based telescopes like Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) located in the Antofagasta Region of Atacama Desert in Chile for the same.

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First Published Date: 29 Apr, 11:53 IST