Asteroid 2008 RW nearing Earth today; know size, speed, other details | Tech News

Asteroid 2008 RW nearing Earth today; know size, speed, other details

Asteroid 2008 RW which is as big as 310 feet (size of a building) is moving towards Earth at high speed. Check all the details here.

| Updated on: Sep 12 2022, 10:05 IST
Asteroid whizzes past Earth in close encounter: NASA
1/5 On Wednesday, a giant fireball was seen and heard across the Mississippi, US. While locals were left wondering whether they saw an alien ship or an asteroid, NASA tells us the truth. (Pixabay)
2/5 According to, it is at a maximum distance of 380 million kilometers away from the Sun. On the other hand, its distance from the Earth was just 2.74 million kilometers, equivalent to 0.02 astronomical units. An astronomical unit (AU, or au) is basically a unit of length equal to the average, or mean, distance between Earth and the Sun, that is, 149,597,870.7 km (92,955,807.3 miles). (Pixabay)
3/5 The report says, “The asteroid 2022 OX3 flew past Earth on August 02 at 18:45 at a distance of 2.74 million kilometers at a speed of 16 kilometers per second.” Although NASA has stated that this asteroid didn’t pose any viable threat to Earth, it was still classified as a potentially hazardous asteroid due to the close proximity of its encounter with Earth. (NASA)
4/5 The Near-Earth objects (NEOs) are monitored by NASA's Planetary Defense Coordination Office which monitors the sky with telescopes and keeps a track of upcoming flybys. Keeping a track of these NEOs has become relatively easy with the advancement of technology. With the help of advanced telescopes, more than 750,000 asteroids have been discovered to date out of which over 27,000 are near-Earth asteroids. (Pixabay)
5/5 This is not the first encounter where an asteroid has flown close to Earth. On May 9, Asteroid Asteroid 467460 (2006 JF42), flew close past Earth. Previously, on April 28, Asteroid 418135 (2008 AG33), passed by our planet. (Pixabay)
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Asteroid 2008 RW is zooming towards Earth today. (Pixabay)

There are several near-Earth objects (NEOs) floating in outer space. And one of such objects is rushing towards Earth today, September. According to the information provided by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), an asteroid named 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. As the asteroid will fly past our planet there is no risk or danger to be worried about.

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 today. 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 nearing our planet. It can be known that both of these asteroids are not supposed to pose any threat to our planet.

Why is it important to track asteroids

Not every asteroid coming towards Earth is dangerous for the living organisms staying on it. However, it also does not decrease the risk of an 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.

How NASA studies and tracks asteroids near and far

Surveys done by NASA-supported ground-based telescopes – including Pans-STARRS1 in Maui, Hawaii, as well as the Catalina Sky Survey near Tucson, Arizona – have identified thousands of near-Earth objects. And a space-based telescope called NEOWISE has identified hundreds of others while scanning the skies at near-infrared wavelengths of light from its polar orbit around Earth. Many ground-based telescopes perform follow-up observations to further aid in orbit calculations and to study the physical properties of the objects.

What are Near-Earth Objects

Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) are comets and asteroids that have been nudged by the gravitational attraction of nearby planets into orbits that allow them to enter the Earth's neighborhood.

What are asteroids

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).

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First Published Date: 12 Sep, 10:05 IST