icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm
15 Apr, 2020 11:48

Oh, what now!? Newfound asteroid the size of a house will fly by Earth on Wednesday

Oh, what now!? Newfound asteroid the size of a house will fly by Earth on Wednesday

NASA’s asteroid defense network has warned of an impending close flyby of a space rock about the size of a house, which will zip past the Earth just inside the orbit of the moon on Wednesday.

Asteroid 2020 GH2 will pass Earth at 19,000 miles per hour and was only discovered on Saturday April 11. With a diameter of between 43 and 70 feet (13-70 meters) wide, GH2 could inflict significant damage were it to crash into our planet. Mercifully, however, it will miss Earth, flying by at a distance of 223,000 miles (359,000 kilometers). 


For context, the average lunar distance from Earth is 239,000 miles (385,000 km). For an asteroid to pose a clear and present danger to us, it would need to come within the range of geostationary weather satellites, which operate at a distance of about 22,000 miles (35,000 km) from Earth.

Dr Kelly Fast of NASA’s Asteroid Watch gave a novel demonstration –from her home– of the threat level involved in these close-approach asteroid events.

Ever-vigilant stargazers are awaiting yet another close flyby on April 29, when asteroid 1998 OR2, which boasts a diameter of between two and four kilometers, is expected to buzz Earth at a safe distance of 3.9 million miles (6.2 million km). 

At any given moment, NASA is tracking somewhere in the region of 20,000 near-Earth asteroids, but more are discovered all the time.

Also on rt.com No aliens but massive destruction: Study offers theory about ORIGIN of mysterious interstellar visitor ‘Oumuamua

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!