59-foot asteroid set to pass Earth today! Know speed, size, and more
NASA has revealed details about a close approach by a 59-foot Apollo group asteroid today, November 1. Know information such as its speed, distance of approach, and more.
NASA has revealed that an asteroid is on its way and its orbit could bring it close to Earth today, November 1. October was filled with multiple asteroid approaches, and it seems like November will continue this trend. The asteroid, given the designation of Asteroid 2023 UZ3, is set to pass the planet today. This space rock was spotted by NASA's Defense Coordination Office (PDCO), which is responsible for monitoring the skies and keeping a watch on various Near-Earth Objects (NEOs), using various space and ground-based telescopes such as NEOWISE telescope, Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), Pans-STARRS1 and Catalina Sky Survey.
The space agency has a suite of advanced tech equipment used for observing and monitoring Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) such as asteroids, comets, and more.
Asteroid 2023 UZ3: Details of close approach
The asteroid will pass the planet by a distance of approximately 1 million kilometers, and is already speeding at 51814 kilometers per hour, which is even faster than a hypersonic ballistic missile! Despite its blistering speed, this asteroid has not been declared as a ‘Potentially Hazardous Object'. These are celestial objects that are larger than 492 feet in diameter and pass Earth closer than 7.5 million kilometers. In terms of size, the asteroid is nearly 59 feet wide, making it almost as big as a house!
Astonishingly, it is the same size as the Chelyabinsk asteroid that exploded over the Russian city in 2013, damaging over 7000 buildings and leaving about 1000 people injured when the impact shattered glass and sent it flying across the city.
The space agency has also revealed that Asteroid 2023 UZ3 belongs to the Apollo group of Near-Earth Asteroids, which are Earth-crossing space rocks with semi-major axes larger than Earth's. These asteroids are named after the humongous 1862 Apollo asteroid, discovered by German astronomer Karl Reinmuth in the 1930s.
According to NASA, this will be the first time this asteroid has been observed approaching Earth, according to NASA CNEOS. As of today, no close approach in the near future is expected.
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