Three Huge Asteroids Will Skim Past Earth Today

Today is a big day for close-approach asteroids as three are set to skim past Earth.  The largest could be up to 272 feet wide — that’s almost as big as the Statue of Liberty.  All of the asteroids are on NASA’s close approach list.  The first pass will happen around 9:12am. That’s when Asteroid 2020 RK2 is expected to come within a distance of 2.3 million miles of our planet.  NASA thinks it will be traveling around 15,000 miles per hour.  Even though it will be millions of miles away, in the grand scheme of space, this isn’t a large distance at all.  This is why NASA will be keeping an eye on this asteroid, along with the two that come after it today.  Any fast-moving space object that comes within around 4.65 million miles is considered “potentially hazardous” by cautious space organizations.  After Asteroid 2020 RK2 has shot past, Asteroid 2020 TB should come next around 2:25pm.  NASA thinks the asteroid will be smaller but could still be up to 223 feet wide.  The space rock is expected to shoot past at 17,000 miles per hour and will be around 2.7 million miles away from Earth.  Last but not least, Asteroid 2019 SB6 is expected to shoot past at 7:23 p.m.  It could be up to 85 feet wide and could reach over 17,000 miles per hour.  The space rock should come the closest to Earth of the three.  It’s expected to be around 2.1 million miles away at its closest point.  NASA does not expect any of the asteroids to veer off course and impact Earth.

Photo Credit: NASA’s Centre for Near Earth Objects

 

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Scott Fox and Kat Callaghan