Building-sized asteroid goes unnoticed till 2 days after its DANGEROUSLY close pass by Earth

Building-sized asteroid was spotted two days after its dangerously close encounter with the Earth. Know more about the asteroid.

| Updated on: Jul 19 2023, 08:44 IST
Stadium-sized asteroid among 4 other space rocks approaching Earth at breakneck speeds
1/5 Asteroid 2023 NP – Asteroid 2023 NP, which is nearly 65 feet wide, is heading for Earth and will make a close approach today, July 14. This asteroid is heading for Earth at a blistering speed of 29660 kilometers per hour. It will miss Earth at a close distance of 5 million kilometers. (Pixabay)
2/5 Asteroid 2023 NY – Asteroid 2023 NY will make its closest approach to Earth on July 15. In terms of size, it is almost 46 feet wide. As per NASA, it will come as close as 4.4 million kilometers and is already moving at a speed of 7598 kilometers per hour. (Pixabay)
image caption
3/5 Asteroid 2023 NW – Asteroid 2023 NW will make its extremely close approach to the planet on July 16. The asteroid, with a width of 100 feet, will approach at a distance of 6 million kilometers and at a speed of nearly 61471 kilometers per hour. (Pixabay)
image caption
4/5 Asteroid 2023 MG6 - The biggest asteroid of them all, Asteroid 2023 MG6, is currently heading towards Earth and will pass by Earth on July 16. The asteroid is a staggering 910 feet wide, travelling at almost 44562 kilometers per hour while making its closest approach at 3.6 million kilometers.  (NASA)
5/5 Asteroid 2020 UQ3 – Asteroid 2020 UQ3, with a width of nearly 190 feet, will make its closest approach to Earth on July 18. The space rock is already rushing towards Earth at a speed of 33387 kilometers per hour and will miss the planet by a distance of 1.2 million kilometers. (asteroid)
View all Images
Asteroid 2023 NT1 was discovered after it had already passed the Earth. (AFP)

Shockingly, researchers and astronomers have all missed an asteroid that passed our planet from a dangerously close distance, and could have struck it too, if things went the other way! The incident is eerily reminiscent of 2013 when a huge asteroid shattered windows in Chelyabinsk, Russia. According to a report, asteroid 2023 NT1 was first spotted two days after it made its closest approach to Earth on July 13. This asteroid must be three times bigger than the asteroid in 2013.

Sky surveys and scientists discovered the space rock's existence after it had already passed us, leaving it in our rearview mirror. The asteroid's direction was hard to judge due to its direction from Earth just like the Chelyabinsk bolide.

About Asteroid 2023 NT1

The space rock was found by the Asteroid Terrestrials-Impacts Last Alert System (ATLAS) observatory in South Africa on July 15. According to the EarthSky report. the asteroid was 200 feet large and it made a close approach to a 60,000-mile radius of Earth. Although the space rock did not threaten to strike our planet, but such a huge object getting unnoticed can be a problem.

The asteroid's point of origin is considered a weak link in planetary defense efforts.

According to ESA (European Space Agency), approximately one million near-Earth asteroids, spanning from 30 to 100 meters wide, are predicted to exist, and the vast majority, 98.9 percent are yet to be detected.

Future mission to detect Asteroid

NASA intends to launch a mission dubbed NEO Surveyor by 2030 in order to find such massive undiscovered space objects.

ESA has also planned a mission known as NEOMIR. This mission focuses to provide early warnings for space objects that make near-earth encounters and are directed from the Sun.

According to Forbes. the 2023 NT1 is among the largest asteroids seen in recent months, but new ones are discovered every week.

Chelyabinsk Meteor

Earlier in 2013, the Chelyabinsk meteor was another incident that got unnoticed and created serious damage in Russia. The meteor also came from the direction of the Sun and it was 65 feet big. the asteroid triggered a powerful shockwave that created havoc, destroying thousands of buildings. This event caused approximately 1,500 injuries as shattered glass from broken windows became dangerous projectiles. It is known as the largest asteroid impact on Earth in more than a century.

Follow HT Tech for the latest tech news and reviews , also keep up with us on Whatsapp channel,Twitter, Facebook, Google News, and Instagram. For our latest videos, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

First Published Date: 19 Jul, 08:44 IST