310-foot asteroid zooming towards Earth at mind-blowing speed- Check all details

    An asteroid called 2008 RW as big as 310 feet (size of a building) is moving towards Earth at high speed. Here is all you need to know.

    By: HT TECH
    | Updated on: Sep 10 2022, 15:52 IST
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    Asteroid 2008 RW to pass by Earth on September 12. (Pixabay)

    Not every asteroid coming towards Earth is dangerous for the living organisms staying on it. However, it also does not decrease the risk of the asteroid striking the planet or causing some other harm. Therefore, scientists and researchers keep an eye on every object that is heading towards Earth and study it in order to know if it can collide with the planet or pass harmlessly by after buzzing the planet at close quarters. As per the latest information provided by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), an asteroid dubbed Asteroid 2008 RW, as big as 310 feet (size of a building), will reportedly fly past Earth on September 12, at 19:50 with a speed of 10 kilometres per second.

    According to JPL, the asteroid's closest Earth approach will be 4,160,000 KM. Also, the 2008 RW is not the only asteroid that will be passing by our planet on September 12. Other than this an asteroid named as 2022 RJ2, that is of an approximate size of 45 feet (size of a house) will also be passing close to earth. It can be known that both of these asteroids are not supposed to pose any threat to our planet.

    For the uninitiated, asteroids are small, rocky objects leftover from the solar system's formation around some 4.5 billion years ago. They orbit the sun and mostly reside in the between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, also known as asteroid belt. They are made of different kinds of rocks, and hence, no two asteroids are alike. They also come under the category of near-Earth objects (NEO).

    According to NASA, "NEOs are characterized by using optical and radio telescopes to determine their size, shape, rotation, and physical composition. Some of the most detailed characterization data is obtained for NEOs that approach Earth close enough to be observed with planetary radar, performed by radio telescopes at NASA's Deep Space Network and the National Science Foundation's Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico."

    Did you know?

    NASA's NEO Observations Program is tasked with finding, tracking, and characterizing NEOs and identifying those that may pose a hazard to Earth. Ground-based telescopes and NASA's NEOWISE spacecraft are the current means of finding NEOs. WISE surveyed the sky in four wavelengths of the infrared band, at a very high sensitivity. Its design specified as goals that the full sky atlas of stacked images it produced have 5-sigma sensitivity limits of 120, 160, 650, and 2600 microjanskies (µJy) at 3.3, 4.7, 12, and 23 µm (aka microns).

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    First Published Date: 10 Sep, 15:52 IST
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