Alert! NASA expects aircraft-sized asteroid to make close Earth approach | Tech News

Alert! NASA expects aircraft-sized asteroid to make close Earth approach

NASA has revealed information about an asteroid which is expected to come very close to Earth soon. Know details such as its speed, distance and more.

| Updated on: Mar 02 2023, 10:08 IST
Impending danger! NASA reveals 5 asteroids heading for Earth
1/6 Asteroid 2023 DK – NASA has red-flagged an asteroid named Asteroid 2023 DK due to its extremely close approach to the planet. The 29 feet wide asteroid will make its closest approach to Earth tomorrow, February 25, at a distance of 2.5 million kilometers and is already on its way travelling at a speed of nearly 14540 kilometers per hour. (Pixabay)
2/6 Asteroid 2023 CG1 - An asteroid called Asteroid 2023 CG1 is currently heading towards Earth and is anticipated to pass closely by the planet tomorrow, February 25. NASA has approximated the asteroid to be 99 feet wide. The asteroid is already hurtling towards Earth at a rapid speed of 23331 kilometers per hour. The asteroid's closest approach to Earth will occur at a distance of 5.8 million kilometers.  (Pixabay)
3/6 Asteroid 2023 DA – NASA has alerted that a 57 feet wide asteroid will make its approach to Earth on February 26, at a distance of just 1 million kilometers. The asteroid, known as Asteroid 2023 DA, is already rushing towards Earth, travelling at a speed of 21146 kilometers per hour.  (Wikimedia Commons)
4/6 Asteroid 2023 CX2 – Another asteroid named Asteroid 2023 CX2 is heading for Earth and will make a close approach on February 27. This asteroid, with a width of 35 feet, is heading for Earth at a blistering speed of 8247 kilometers per hour. It will miss Earth at an extremely close distance of 2.9 million kilometers.  (Pixabay)
5/6 Asteroid 2023 CC2 – The fifth asteroid, with a size ranging between 75 feet and 170 feet, is named Asteroid 2023 CC2 and will be making its closest Earth approach on February 27. It will come as close as 6.2 million kilometers, according to NASA. The asteroid is moving at a breakneck speed of 18232 kilometers per hour.  (Pixabay)
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6/6 How are Asteroids named? According to ESA, the process of assigning a provisional designation to an asteroid begins when a single observer detects it on two consecutive nights and then sends their findings to the Minor Planet Centre of the International Astronomical Union (IAU). The IAU assigns a provisional designation, which typically consists of a serial number like "1992 KD". The provisional designation includes the year of the asteroid's discovery, followed by two letters that indicate the order of its discovery during that year. (NASA/JPL)
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Asteroid 2023 DX belongs to the Apollo group of asteroids. (Pixabay)

Asteroids can provide valuable resources such as water, metals, and other minerals to humanity in the future. Scientists also study asteroids to learn more about the early solar system and the conditions that existed when the planets were forming. Asteroids vary in the composition of their core materials. Some asteroids are made up of clay and silicate, while others are made up of silicate materials and nickel-iron, according to NASA.

Asteroids often make close flybys to Earth, generally missing the planet by a safe enough distance although many are dubbed as being potentially hazardous. NASA has now warned that another one is on its way, and it will buzz the planet soon.

Asteroid 2023 DX details

The Asteroid 2023 DX will make its closest approach to Earth tomorrow, March 3, at a distance of 1.9 million kilometers. The asteroid, which is nearly the size of an aircraft with a width of 74 feet, is speeding towards Earth at 46984 kilometers per hour. This space rock belongs to the Apollo group of asteroids, as per NASA.

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NASA tracks asteroids using a combination of ground-based and space-based telescopes. The NASA-funded Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS) scans the night sky for moving objects and reports any potential asteroid detections, while some space-based observatories use infrared sensors to detect asteroids and their characteristics.

Although this asteroid is not expected to collide with Earth, a slight deviation in its trajectory due to the Earth's gravitational pull can send the asteroid hurtling towards Earth for an impact.

How is an Asteroid's orbit Calculated?

An asteroid's orbit is computed by finding the elliptical path about the sun that best fits the available observations of the object using various space and ground-based telescopes such as NASA's NEOWISE telescope and its brand-new Sentry II algorithm. 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 observed to be at those same time.

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First Published Date: 02 Mar, 10:01 IST