NASA talks about a large “potentially dangerous” asteroid that will pass Earth

A newly discovered “potentially dangerous” asteroid roughly the size of the world’s tallest skyscraper is set to pass Earth on Halloween, according to NASA, RT reported.

The asteroid, named 2022 RM4, has a diameter between 1,083 and 2,428 feet (330 and 740 metres).

It will travel our planet at about 52,500 mph (84,500 km/h), or roughly 68 times the speed of sound.

At its closest approach on November 1, the asteroid will be 1.43 million miles (2.3 million km) from Earth, about six times the average distance between Earth and the Moon, and by cosmic standards, that’s a tiny margin.

NASA defines any space object located within 120 million miles (193 million km) of Earth as a “Near-Earth Object” and classifies any large object located within 4.65 million miles (7.5 million km) of our planet as a “potential hazard”. These potential threats are closely watched by astronomers, who study them with radar for any deviations from their expected trajectories.

NASA tracks and identifies the locations and orbits of nearly 28,000 asteroids using the Last Earth Collision Alert System (ATLAS) – a group of four telescopes capable of scanning the entire night sky every 24 hours.

Since the launch of the Atlas system online in 2017, more than 700 near-Earth asteroids and 66 comets have been detected. Fortunately, those asteroids were small and didn’t cause any damage.

The good news is that Earth faces no known danger from a horrific asteroid collision for at least the next 100 years, according to NASA.

But that doesn’t mean astronomers think they should stop looking.

Related Articles

Back to top button