Huge “potentially dangerous” asteroid flies over Earth at supersonic speed – National

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Star observers, astronomers and Armageddon Fans were staring at a live feed from the solar system on Wednesday as a “potentially dangerous asteroid” – the size of four CN towers – hit Earth.

The large piece of space rock, known as the 1998 OR2, approached our planet early Wednesday in a relatively close flyby that posed no threat to life on Earth. He started the approach just before 6:00 am ET and was expected to remain relatively close throughout the day.

Experts said it would be visible to amateur astronomers through a telescope, but there were never any plans to approach about 6.3 million kilometers from Earth. This is about 16 times the distance between our planet and the moon.

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In other words, NASA never even thought of hitting Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck to stop an event related to the extinction of the dinosaurs.

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The two-kilometer-wide asteroid would have been large enough to cause serious damage, particularly if it had touched Earth at its estimated speed of 30,578 kilometers (19,000 miles) per hour, about 25 times the speed of sound.

According to NASA’s Center for Near Earth Object Studies, this overview was to be an “exceptional opportunity” for astronomers to study rock.

Researchers from the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico shared images of the asteroid earlier this week. They joked that the asteroid appeared to have brought its own “face mask” in the middle of the Earth’s coronavirus pandemic, based on a curved white line that appeared during their scans.

Anne Virkki, head of planetary radar at the Arecibo observatory, and the asteroid 1998 OR2 pose with their masks.

Anne Virkki, head of planetary radar at the Rececibo Observatory, and the 1998 asteroid OR2 pose with their masks.


Via University of Central Florida


The virtual telescope project in Europe set up a live stream for those who wanted to watch the last part of the flyby on Wednesday, from 2.30 p.m. AND.

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Scientists have seen this big one coming for more than two decades, thanks to a robust international system for locating and tracking asteroids in our vicinity of space. It has been dubbed a “potentially dangerous asteroid” because of its size and relatively close flight path, but experts say he never cared that it might hit us.

“This asteroid is safe for Earth and will not strike,” astrophysicist Brad Tucker of the Australian National University told the Guardian.

“This is a disaster that we will not have,” said Tucker.

He added that the giant rock would not have wiped out all life on Earth, even if it had collided with the planet.

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“Although large, it is still smaller than the asteroid that hit Earth and wiped out the dinosaurs,” he said.

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However, the asteroid tracking system is not perfect, as astronomers discovered at the end of last year. It was then that they spotted a potentially destructive asteroid of the city that was approaching Earth just days before it flew over a distance much closer than the moon.

NASA said it would take an asteroid more than one to two kilometers to change the Earth’s global climate and one more than five km to cause a mass extinction event. These are still relatively tiny compared to the space rock that killed the dinosaurs, which was about 16 kilometers wide.

No object of this type should touch Earth for several hundred years.

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Earthlongers who are still living for a few decades may be lucky to see 1998 OR2 get even closer to our planet in the future, according to NASA data. The asteroid is expected to arrive less than 1.8 million kilometers from Earth on April 16, 2079, according to NASA projections. It’s still about four times the distance from Earth to the moon, and there is no risk of impact at that time.

“We understand very precisely its orbital path, and we can confidently say that this asteroid has no possibility of impact for at least the next 200 years,” said NASA.

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The space agency says the asteroid is still considered “potentially dangerous” because slight changes in its orbit could pose a danger to Earth sometime in the future.

But don’t worry: you’ve already followed the path of the dinosaurs.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.



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