A massive asteroid will make its closest approach to the Earth very soon, says NASA; know the risk it poses. Will it hit our planet?
In just 72 hours, the Earth will need to brace itself for a potential asteroid strike. According to NASA, an asteroid which is larger than the Empire State Building in New York City will come dangerously close to our planet. This 1,600-feet wide asteroid poses a threat unlike most asteroids this year due to its massive size and close proximity to Earth. If the asteroid were to impact the Earth, humanity will surely witness massive amounts of destruction as well as long term consequences in terms of forest fires, drastic changes to climate, earthquakes, tsunamis and more- something on the lines of what happened to the dinosaurs . Find out the chances of this asteroid striking Earth. Also read: A large asteroid came very close to the Earth on Monday.
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory that is run by NASA has revealed that the asteroid is named 388945 (2008 TZ3) and it is 1600-feet or 488 meters wide. The space rock is going to make its closest approach to the Earth at a distance of 5,710,000 kilometers on May 15. The asteroid is moving at a mind-numbing speed of 29,520 km/h. Even though it sounds like a large distance, at the high speed it is traveling, it can cover the distance in a matter of hours. In fact, due to its close proximity to the Earth, the asteroid has been billed as a near Earth (NEO) asteroid. NASA has been constantly watching the asteroid to ensure that it maintains its distance. At the moment, it is expected that the asteroid will make a safe passage and is not likely to impact against Earth.
NASA: 1,600-feet wide asteroid to come dangerously close to the Earth
As the asteroid 2008 TZ3 veers too close to the Earth, it has been classified as a potentially dangerous asteroid. This Apollo-class asteroid comes close to the Earth every two years as its orbit period is approximately 732 days. Its last approach near the Earth was on May 10, 2020 but it was a relatively safe passage. However, it should be noted that the asteroid is coming extremely close to our planet this time and it will never come this close in our entire lives. This is why this particular passage of the asteroid is being monitored so carefully. Also read: NASA DART mission is set to deflect a massive asteroid.
The NASA Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO) has been closely observing the asteroid for any last moment deviation. The Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO) has been an integral part of the American agency observing and mapping out all the asteroids that can pose a threat to us.