6.5 feet-long asteroid to pass close to the earth on November 2, least chance of hitting the planet
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has predicted that an asteroid is heading towards planet Earth. The 6.5 feet-long asteroid, which has been identified as 2018VP1, is expected to come close to earth the day before the U.S. election on November 2.
NASA, in a statement, however, said that state that there is a least chance of hitting the earth. It said that there a 0.41 per cent chance of the asteroid hitting the planet.
NASA’s prediction has been made based on 21 observations of the asteroid over the course of 12.968 days.
The Centre for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) said that the asteroid is expected to pass near Earth on the eve of November 2, the day of the US presidential election.
It was first identified at Palomar Observatory in California in 2018.
NASA says there are three potential impacts.
But “based on 21 observations spanning 12.968 days,” the US space agency has determined the asteroid probably won’t have a deep impact.
Earlier, a car-sized asteroid flew past our home planet over the last weekend, in the closest flyby of such space rocks on record and scientists hardly had any information about it until it departed.
The asteroid passed 2,950 kilometres above the southern Indian Ocean on Sunday at 12.08 am EDT (9.38 pm India time), NASA said.
The vast majority of Near Earth Asteroids, or NEAs pass by safely at much greater distances — usually much farther away than the Moon.
The first image of this record-setting space rock, asteroid 2020 QG, was taken by a NASA-funded facility six hours after the closest point of approach as the asteroid was heading away from Earth.
The SUV-sized asteroid was discovered by two students of IIT-Bombay, hailing from Pune and Haryana.
The students are Kunal Deshmukh and Kritti Sharma — working on a research project to hunt for Near Earth Asteroids — who discovered the celestial object just hours later using data from the robotic Zwicky Transient Facility, (ZTF), California.
(With IANS inputs)