Asteroid bigger than London eye to fly past Earth on July 24: NASA
New Delhi : A giant 'potentially hazardous' asteroid believed to be bigger than the size of an Asteroid has been scheduled to fly past Earth on July 24, warned NASA. For reference, London Eye is 443 feet high and the asteroid is larger by as much as 50 per cent.
This space rock named as Asteroid 2020ND, measuring in at 170 metres will make a close approach to our planet. Travelling at a staggering speed of 13.5 kilometres per second or 48,000 kilometres per hour, the asteroid will come within just 0.034 astronomical units (AU) of the earth on July 24.
The space agency says, “Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs) are currently defined based on parameters that measure the asteroid’s potential to make threatening close approaches to the Earth. Specifically, all asteroids with a minimum orbit intersection distance (MOID) of 0.05 au or less and an absolute magnitude (H) of 22.0 or less are considered PHAs.”
Revealing more information on the asteroid, NASA on its Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) website said: “NEOs are comets and asteroids that have been nudged by the gravitational attraction of nearby planets into orbits that allow them to enter the Earth’s neighbourhood. The scientific interest in comets and asteroids is due largely to their status as the relatively unchanged remnant debris from the solar system formation process some 4.6 billion years ago.”
“The giant outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune) formed from an agglomeration of billions of comets and the leftover bits and pieces from this formation process are the comets we see today. Likewise, today’s asteroids are the bits and pieces leftover from the initial agglomeration of the inner planets that include Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars, ” NASA added.