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Asteroid Comes Very Close To Earth, But NASA Says No Impact

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Cape Canaveral, Fla. — An asteroid the size of a delivery truck will pass by Earth on Thursday night.

NASA claims that the asteroid is unlikely to hit Earth and will be a near miss.

NASA announced Wednesday that the newly discovered asteroid will soar 2,200 miles (3,600 kilometers) from the southern tip of South America. That’s ten times closer than a swarm of communications satellites orbiting overhead.

The closest is 6:27 PM Chicago time.

Even if the space rock got closer, scientists said most of it could burn up in the atmosphere and some large pieces could fall as meteorites.

NASA’s collision risk assessment system, called Scout, quickly ruled out a strike, said its developer Davide Farnocchia, an engineer at the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.

“Despite very few observations, we were able to predict the asteroid coming very close to the Earth,” Farnocchia said in a statement. It’s one of the closest approaches by any known near-Earth object.”

The asteroid known as 2023 BU, discovered Saturday, is believed to be between 11 feet (3.5 meters) and 28 feet (8.5 meters) in diameter. It was first discovered by the same Crimean amateur astronomer Gennady Borisov who discovered the interstellar comet in 2019. In a matter of days, dozens of observations were made by astronomers around the world, allowing us to refine the asteroid’s orbit.

The asteroid’s trajectory is significantly altered by Earth’s gravity once it passes. Instead of going around the Sun in 359 days, it will move in an elliptical orbit lasting 425 days, according to NASA.


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Written by Natalia Chi

Chicago Popular; Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.

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