Huge 'Potentially Hazardous' Asteroid to Buzz Near Earth on Tuesday


A massive asteroid will make one of its closest approaches to Earth on Tuesday, but experts say it will still be far enough away that there is no danger to the planet.

The asteroid carries the less-than-poetic name of 7482 (1994 PC1) and will zoom within 1,231,184 miles of Earth, according to CBS.

That seems far, but it makes the record books as the closest pass the asteroid has made since January 17, 1933, when it came about 700,000 miles from Earth.

Asteroids zip past Earth all the time, but this one is larger than most. The hunk of flying rock is about a kilometer long. For those who have forgotten their metric conversions, a kilometer is five-eighths of a mile.

Its 3,280-foot length makes it more than twice the height of the Empire State Building, which is 1,454 feet, and even taller than the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa in Dubai, which is 2,716.5 feet tall.

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Italy’s Virtual Telescope Project will start a livestream event at 3 p.m. Eastern time.

“The Virtual Telescope Project will show it live online, just at the fly-by time, when it will peak in brightness,” stated the livestream page, written by project founder Gianluca Masi.

Earthlings who miss the show can see the asteroid pass by again in July, but not as close.

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After that, it will be the 22nd century – January 18, 2105, to be exact – when it will come within 1,445,804 miles.

NASA has kept its eye on this asteroid since 1994, and classifies it as “potentially hazardous” because of its “potential to make threatening close approaches to the Earth.”

All told, there are about 25,000 asteroids at least 500 feet wide that fly anywhere near Earth that could pose a problem if their orbits veered into a collision course

“We’re actually not talking, like, global extinction event, but regional devastation on the area that could wipe out a city or even a small state,” Nancy Chabot, chief planetary scientist at Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Laboratory. has said. “And so it is a real concern. It is a real threat.”

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An Earthbound asteroid currently stars in the film “Don’t Look Up,” in which vapid officials scramble to deal with an asteroid ready to whack Earth.

Unlike the movie, NASA is a step ahead of the game.

In November, it launched a test to see if a rocket could knock an asteroid off course. In this case, an object moving at 15,000 miles per hour will hit a 525-foot-wide asteroid called Dimorphos.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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