170-foot scary asteroid rushing towards Earth at 42912 kmph; will reach tomorrow, says NASA

A gigantic 170-foot asteroid is all set to come as close as 7.07 million kilometers to Earth tomorrow, Sunday, April 9, informs NASA.

| Updated on: Apr 08 2023, 11:24 IST
150-foot asteroid among 5 set to buzz Earth, NASA warns
1/5 Asteroid 2023 FU6: Today, this small 45-foot asteroid is set to make its closest approach to Earth at a distance of just 1.16 million miles. Asteroid 2023 FU6 is already hurtling towards the planet at a speed of 36677 kmph.   (Pixabay)
2/5 Asteroid 2023 FS11: This 82-foot asteroid will fly past Earth by a close margin of 4.11 million miles today. This airplane-sized asteroid is travelling towards the planet at a speed of 42257 kilometers per hour.  (Pixabay)
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3/5 Asteroid 2023 FA7: Another airplane-sized asteroid will make its closest approach to Earth at a distance of 1.4 million miles on April 4. Asteroid 2023 FA7 is 92-foot space rock which is hurtling toward Earth at a blistering 86428 kmph.  (Freepik)
4/5 Asteroid 2023 FQ7: This 65-foot asteroid, as big as a house, will be making its closest approach to Earth on April 5. It will come as close as 3.57 million miles, according to NASA's JPL. The asteroid is moving at a blistering speed of 30279 kilometers per hour toward Earth. (Wikimedia Commons)
5/5 Asteroid 2023 FZ3: One of the largest ones amongst the next upcoming asteroids is this 150-foot wide monster rock that is set to make an uncomfortably close approach towards Earth on April 6, speeding at a fiery 67656 kmph. It will be just 2.61 million miles away from the Earth.  (Pixabay)
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Here is what NASA informs about the 170-foot asteroid 2023 FY13. (Pixabay)

Can an asteroid threaten Earth's civilization? Well, the era of dinosaurs is believed to have ended because of an asteroid's collision with the planet! What are the evidences of a space object colliding with Earth? The evidence of such occurrences are a huge number of craters on Earth. Even the moon and other planetary bodies have these asteroid collision craters. "We believe anything larger than one to two kilometers could have worldwide effects," US space agency NASA stated. It also said that asteroids that populate the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, and pose no threat to Earth, can be as big as 940 kilometers (about 583 miles) across. Howver, if something untoward happens, then these asteroids can be knocked out of their orbits towards Earth.

170-foot Asteroid 2023 FY13

Meanwhile, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has informed of a 170-foot large asteroid named 2023 FY13 which will be nearing planet Earth on Sunday, April 9. The airplane-sized asteroid will make its closest approach to the planet at a distance of 7.07 million kilometers and is moving at a blazing speed of 42912 kilometers per hour. According to NASA, this space rock belongs to the Apollo group of Near-Earth Asteroids.

How NASA calculates an asteroid's orbit

In order to keep a track on the movement of asteroids, NASA uses several telescopes and other machines. The US space agency also calculates an asteroid's orbit. An asteroid's orbit is computed by finding the elliptical path about the sun that best fits the available observations of the object. That is, the object's computed path about the sun is adjusted until the predictions of where the asteroid should have appeared in the sky at several observed times match the positions where the object was actually observed to be at those same times, NASA explained.

As more and more observations are used to further improve an object's orbit, NASA becomes more confident in its knowledge of where the object will be in the future.

What is NASA doing to find and learn more about potentially hazardous asteroids

NASA has established a Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO), managed in the Planetary Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C. The PDCO ensures the early detection of potentially hazardous objects (PHOs) - asteroids and comets whose orbits are predicted to bring them within 0.05 Astronomical Units of Earth (5 million miles or 8 million kilometers) and of a size large enough to reach Earth's surface - that is, greater than approximately 30 to 50 meters.

NASA tracks and characterizes these objects and issues warnings about potential impacts, providing timely and accurate information.

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First Published Date: 08 Apr, 11:23 IST