Proximity alert! Whopping 180-foot asteroid speeding towards Earth for close approach
A gigantic asteroid, which is almost as big as an aircraft, could make a very close approach to Earth soon, says NASA.
Several asteroids make close approaches to Earth on a daily basis. Their close approaches serve as a reminder of the potential danger that asteroids can pose to our planet. Just remember what happened to the dinosaurs! To minimize the uncertainty and counter the threat, space agencies like NASA, ESA and others continue to keep an eye on these Near-Earth Objects which have the potential to cause major destruction on Earth if they ever impacted.
With the help of its advanced tech, NASA has now revealed that one of the asteroids that is on its way is gigantic and could approach Earth at a very close distance!
Asteroid 2023 HZ4 details
NASA has warned that an asteroid, given the designation of Asteroid 2023 HZ4, is speeding towards Earth and is expected to pass by the planet closely tomorrow, May 4. In fact, this space rock is already on its way towards us travelling at a staggering speed of 81907 kilometers per hour. The asteroid will make its closest approach to Earth at a distance of just 3.07 million kilometers or 0.02058 astronomical units (AU).
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 kilometers. Although this distance may seem a lot, it is relatively a small number in astronomical distances, considering how big the asteroid is.
Asteroid 2023 HZ4 belongs to the Apollo group of asteroids which are Earth-crossing space rocks with semi-major axes larger than Earth's. They are named after the humongous 1862 Apollo asteroid, discovered by German astronomer Karl Reinmuth in the 1930s.
This is particularly concerning due to its sheer size. With a width of nearly 180 feet, this space rock is the size of an aircraft! Impact of an asteroid this size would cause regional destruction but would not be able to end life on Earth.
These close calls with asteroids highlight the importance of continued technological development in asteroid detection and monitoring programs, which help to ensure the safety of our planet from the potential impact of these space rocks.
Follow HT Tech for the latest tech news and reviews , also keep up with us on Twitter, Facebook, Google News, and Instagram. For our latest videos, subscribe to our YouTube channel.