Asteroid, larger than the Statue of Unity, is coming dangerously close to the Earth, says NASA | Tech News

Asteroid, larger than the Statue of Unity, is coming dangerously close to the Earth, says NASA

According to NASA, a 700-feet wide asteroid is headed towards the Earth today, August 4. Does it pose a threat on our planet and should we be concerned? Find out.

By: HT TECH
| Updated on: Aug 04 2022, 09:49 IST
Asteroid whizzes past Earth in close encounter: NASA
Asteroids
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)
Asteroids
2/5 According to Sky.org, 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)
Asteroids
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)
Asteroids
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)
Asteroids
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)
Asteroids
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This massive asteroid has been spotted by NASA and it is speeding towards the Earth. Is an asteroid strike possible? Know here. (Pixabay)

It feels like the Earth is being bombarded with asteroids lately. We are witnessing large asteroids passing our planet left and right almost every single day. Last weekend, two asteroids came dangerously close to our planet on consecutive days. Then, on August 3, a 1,200-feet wide massive asteroid zoomed past our planet. And now, another 700-feet wide asteroid is speeding towards us. And this one can spell trouble for us because it will be coming closer to the Earth than any other asteroid recently. So, the question is how many times more can the Earth ride its own luck? Or is this the time when we finally witness a disastrous asteroid strike? Read on to find out.

The report comes from NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory's website. According to them, the asteroid 2022 OE02 is a 700-feet or 213-meters wide asteroid. For reference, this is larger than the Statue of Unity (182 meters) situated in Gujarat. The asteroid is predicted to come as close as 3.2 million miles close to the Earth. If you feel this distance is too large to worry about, then just know that considering the astronomical speed of these celestial objects, this distance can be covered in a short amount of time, if a deviation to the asteroid took place for some reason.

700-feet wide asteroid zooming in on the Earth

The asteroid 2022 OE02 has been classified as a potentially hazardous asteroid by NASA. This classification is given to those near-Earth objects (NEO), which are big enough to pose a threat for our planet. At its size, this asteroid can do some serious damage to our planet, if it ends up making an impact. This is the first time this asteroid has been spotted and that's why not much is known about it. We do know that it has an abnormally elongated orbit where its perihelion is between Mercury and Venus and its aphelion is near the orbit of Jupiter. Despite the low data, latest prediction models suggest that the asteroid is expected to make a safe passage across the Earth.

To protect the Earth from any such future threats, NASA is conducting a DART mission, which will give it the capabilities of sending rockets to push an incoming asteroid slightly and change its trajectory to protect the planet.

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First Published Date: 04 Aug, 09:49 IST
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