National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) warned that two gigantic asteroids will fly past the Earth on September 14. The warning came from NASA’s Centre for Near Earth Object Studies (NEOS).
NASA also warned that the pair of asteroids flying by Earth this weekend could pose a threat to our planet.
NASA’s Planetary Defence Officer Lindley Johnson said, “These asteroids have been well observed – once since 2000 and the other since 2010 – and their orbits are very well known.”
Johnson added that both of these asteroids are passing at about 14 lunar distances from the Earth, or about 3.5 million miles away, but small asteroids pass by Earth this close all the time.
Near-Earth asteroid 2010 C01, estimated to be 120 to 260 metres in size, safely passed Earth at 3.42 a.m. on Saturday. The second object, 2000 QW7 is estimated to be 290 to 650 metres in size will pass later at 11.54 p.m. on Saturday.
Near-Earth objects (NEOs) are asteroids and comets that orbit the Sun, but their orbits bring them into Earth’s neighborhood – within 30 million miles of Earth’s orbit. These objects are relatively unchanged remnant debris from the solar system’s formation some 4.6 billion years ago.
Most of the rocky asteroids originally formed in the warmer inner solar system between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, while comets, composed mostly of water ice with embedded dust particles, formed in the cold outer solar system.
At the start of 2019, the number of discovered NEOs totaled more than 19,000, and it has since surpassed 20,000. An average of 30 new discoveries are added each week, NASA said.
These two gigantic asteroids are 2000 QW7 and 2010 CO1.
2000 QW7, which is as big as the size of Burj Khalifa (the world’s tallest building in Dubai) is all set to fly close to the Earth on September 14. 2000 QW7 is approximately 290 to 650 metres wide.
This is not the first this asteroid that has approached the Earth. Earlier, it had first approached our planet on September 1, 2000.
The other asteroid that is going to pass by the Earth is 2010 CO1.
As per media reports, 2000 QW7 asteroid will be the first asteroid that will skim past the Earth.
According to NASA, asteroids are tiny, rocky objects that orbit the Sun. Although they orbit the Sun just like planets, asteroids are much smaller in size than planets.