Asteroid 2020 ND will be almost 50% bigger than the famous London Eye will move past Earth on July 24.
According to NASA, asteroid 2020 ND will be as close as 0.034 astronomical units (5,086,328 kilometres) to our planet.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has issued a warning that an asteroid, 50% bigger than the famous London Eye will move past Earth on July 24.
The space boffins in the United States have named it as Asteroid 2020 ND. The asteroid is also classified as a potentially hazardous asteroid (PHA) and Near-Earth Object (NEO) by NASA.
The asteroid is estimated to be of 120- 260m in diameter. But there isn’t anything to worry about as it won’t be the asteroid’s first-time visiting Earth, it has done that at least five times before as per NASA. It maintains an orbit around the Sun that makes it come close to both Earth and Mars every once in a while.
According to NASA, asteroid 2020 ND will be as close as 0.034 astronomical units (5,086,328 kilometres) to our planet and is travelling at a great speed of 48,000 kilometres per hour.
Five other asteroids will fly past Earth this month, which includes the 2002 BF25 on July 21, the 2020 ND on July 24, 2020 MX3 on July 29 as well as the 2018 PY7 and the 2007 RF1 on July 31.
Potentially Hazardous Asteroids
“Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs) are currently defined based on parameters that measure the asteroid’s potential to make threatening close approaches to the Earth. Specifically, all asteroids with an Earth Minimum Orbit Intersection Distance (MOID) of 0.05 au or less and an absolute magnitude (H) of 22.0 or less are considered PHAs,” according to NASA.
According to NASA, “Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) are comets and asteroids that have been nudged by the gravitational attraction of nearby planets into orbits that allow them to enter the Earth’s neighbourhood.
Composed mostly of water ice with embedded dust particles, comets originally formed in the cold outer planetary system while most of the rocky asteroids formed in the warmer inner solar system between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. “
The giant outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune) formed from an agglomeration of billions of comets and the leftover bits and pieces from this formation process are the comets we see today.