A huge asteroid is approaching Earth. NASA projects that the asteroid, called 7482 (1994 PC1), will fly past our planet on Tuesday
An asteroid called 7482 (1994 PC1) is approaching Earth and will fly by this Tuesday at its closest point to our planet, the NASA space agency said.
The asteroid is estimated to be more than 3,280 feet wide (nearly 1 kilometer), hundreds of feet taller than the world’s tallest building, Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, which is 2,717 feet tall.
It will pass within 1.2 million miles of Earth, at a speed of approximately 47,344 miles per hour, according to NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies.
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory reckons the asteroid could come within 1,231,184 miles of Earth. This would be the closest the asteroid has been to Earth since 1933, when NASA projected it came within 700,000 miles. The passage will be in the afternoon, around 4:50 pm ET, according to NASA’s counter.
NASA forecasts that the body will pass close to Earth again in July. Asteroid 7482 (1994 PC1) is the closest the asteroid will get in the next two centuries, according to NASA projections.
The space agency has been monitoring this asteroid since it was discovered in August 1994. It is classified as “potentially dangerous” because it can make “threatening” approaches to our planet.
While there are thousands of asteroids that can pass close to Earth, large asteroids like this one are less common and are considered dangerous because if they ever hit Earth they could have devastating effects.
In September of this year, a NASA mission hopes to crash a spacecraft into an asteroid to change the trajectory, in a test to see if this type of operation could serve to deflect a potentially dangerous asteroid for our planet.