Will Asteroid 1998 OR2 Hit Earth On April 29? Find Here (Representative Image) (Photo Credit: Pixabay.com)
The ‘potentially hazardous’ asteroid identified as 52768 (1998 OR2), which is capable of ending human civilisation, is just a few weeks away from the close encounter with Earth. Yes, you read it right. Asteroid 1998 OR2 will make a close approach to Earth on April 29 this year. According to NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies, asteroid 1998 OR2 measures somewhere around 2.5 miles (4.1km) across.
The data collected by NASA suggests that the approaching asteroid will close-in on our home planet at the speed of about 8.7km per second or 19,461mph (31,320kmh). At its closest, asteroid 1998 OR2 will visit Earth from a distance of about 0.04205 astronomical units on April 29. Importantly, one astronomical unit measures the distance between Earth and the Sun – about 93 million miles (149.6 million km). This means the space rock will safely miss the Earth.
"On April 29, asteroid 1998 OR2 will safely pass by 3.9 million miles/6.2 million kilometers," scientists with NASA's Asteroid Watch program said in a Twitter post. "There is no warning about this asteroid," they added in another tweet.
It is to be noted that asteroid 1998 OR2 was first spotted flying around the Sun in 1987 and NASA confirmed it’s orbit on June 30, 1987. Later, the space rock was classified as a NEO or near-Earth object.
Recently, NASA's Artificial Intelligence (AI) detected 11 asteroids that pose danger to Earth. Asteroids are small, rocky objects that orbit the Sun. Asteroids frequently visit Earth’s neighbourhood as our planet’s gravitational forces affect them. Asteroids can bring tsunamis, shock waves and flattening winds that could be catastrophic.
Asteroids, if hit Earth, can bring tsunamis, shock waves and flattening winds that could be catastrophic. The space rocks approach towards the Earth due to the gravitational forces that affect them. It is said that one day all life on the Earth will be extinct. Not only life, but the Earth will also extinct someday and an asteroid could be the possible reason. Shocked to hear that? However, a car-sized asteroid slams into the Earth's atmosphere about once in a year. On the other hand, an asteroid large enough to threaten the existence of life on Earth arrives once every few million.