A huge asteroid flying by earth on the 29th of April

An extremely large asteroid will be passing by our planet on the 29th of April 2020.

A huge asteroid flying by earth on the 29th of April

Asteroid (52768) 1998 OR2 will be passing by our planet quite close to earth on the 29th of April 2020. It will fly by around 6 million kilometres away which is a safe distance. This huge rock is about 2kms wide and 4kms long which can be compared to Mount Everest. This event will happen at around 3.26 PM Sri Lankan time. This event will not be visible to the naked eye but the Virtual Telescope Project in Rome will be hosting a free public viewing of the asteroid on the 28th of April. 

 

Radar image of asteroid 1998 OR2, acquired April 18, 2020. Image via Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico.


 

The radar image above shows the asteroid which ironically looks like it's wearing a face mask. The image was captured by The Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. The asteroid was discovered by Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking (NEAT) which is a programme run by NASA on the 24th of July 1998. Their observatory "Haleakala" is situated in Hawaii. Although this asteroid is large, it is not the largest asteroid in existence. 

The asteroid is labelled as a "Potentially Hazardous Asteroid". If it collides with Earth it will cause harmful global effects. But if you have any fears if the asteroid will hit the earth, fear not as it is NOT going to happen. It orbits the sun every 3.67 years. In the year 2079, this asteroid will fly by about 3.5 times closer than this year.