Apollo-group asteroid rushing towards Earth! NASA reveals details of close approach
Asteroids have been making extremely close approaches to Earth recently, and now another one is set to pass the planet today. Know its speed, distance, size, and more.
After numerous delays, NASA's Psyche mission is set to lift off on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Speaking about this upcoming asteroid mission, Laurie Leshin, director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory said, “One month out, we are in great shape”. For the unaware, the Psyche mission will study an asteroid known as 16 Psyche, which is made up of gold, nickel, and iron deposits. According to NASA, it could be worth more than the world's economy put together! Other than its gold-rich structure, the outer surface of this asteroid is nickel-rich which resembles an early planet's core.
It is worth nearly $10 quadrillion, and this is why NASA has planned a mission to this asteroid to study its composition.
In a separate development, NASA has issued details about an asteroid that is hurtling towards Earth for close approach soon.
Asteroid 2023 RH details
The asteroid, designated as Asteroid 2023 RH by NASA's Center for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS), will make its closest approach to Earth tomorrow, September 8, at a distance of just 1.6 million kilometers. It is dashing towards Earth at a fearsome speed of 28544 kilometers per hour. Asteroid 2023 RH belongs to the Apollo group of Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs).
While this asteroid is travelling at a shockingly fast speed, it is not large enough to cause catastrophic damage to Earth. With a width of nearly 91 feet, it can be compared to a huge aircraft! It 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.
Importance of studying asteroids
Scientists study asteroids to learn more about the early solar system and the conditions that existed when the planets were forming. Asteroids can also provide valuable resources such as water, metals, and other minerals. Research on asteroids is critical since it can provide valuable information on the early stages of the solar system and planetary development. Furthermore, these celestial bodies might contain useful resources such as metals and water, which may be utilized in forthcoming space missions.
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