On Sunday, 2010 FR, crossed by Earth’s orbit. It’s size was twice that of the ‘Pyramid of Giza’, moving at a pace of 8 miles per second. If we estimate the speed, it could have reached London from New York in just 7 minutes.
Though it was at a distance of 4.6 million miles from the Earth, scientists called it “potentially hazardous.”
It has been classified as “Near Earth Object” by the NASA scientists. The reason why a NEO is “potentially hazardous” is because, in the future, its orbit around the sun can move closer to the collision point of Earth.
According to NASA:
“NEOs (Near-Earth Objects) 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.”
“The scientific interest in comets and asteroids is due largely to their status as the relatively unchanged remnant debris from the solar system formation process some 4.6 billion years ago.”
What is scarier is that NASA has qualified more than one asteroid as NEO. But their chances of collision remains very small.
Today, 8th September another asteroid, 2020 PT4 will move past Earth’s orbit. Though comparatively smaller than the 2010 FR it is advancing at an even higher speed, 7 miles per second.
2010 FR moved from a distance of 19 times the distance between the Earth and the Moon. This asteroid is comparatively closer, at a distance of 4.9 times the distance between Earth and the Moon. It is just over a million miles away.
This asteroid is the size of two lorries combined, but again it will certainly pass at a safer distance from Earth.