Golden Gate Bridge-sized asteroid will graze Earth
An asteroid almost as large as the Golden Gate Bridge is expected to pass Earth at the end of March. It will be the largest and fastest asteroid to cross our space this year. But don’t worry! It will not get close enough to our planet to cause major unrest.
2001 FO32, the name of the asteroid in question, is also smaller than the last large asteroid that passed close to Earth about a year ago. However, it will be three times closer to our heads and much faster, as NASA explains in a press release.
It measures between 396 and 680 meters wide and is expected to pass a distance of 2 million kilometers on March 21. A distance that will allow astronomers to study the celestial object, officially considered to be an asteroid “close to Earth”.
The rock will reach the exceptionally fast speed of 124,000 kilometers per hour.
“This is the closest approach planned in 2021 for an asteroid of moderate size, that is to say at least several hundred meters,” said Paul Chodas, director of the Center for Near- Earth Object Studies, at CBS News.
Since its discovery in 2001, experts have followed in its footsteps. “Currently, little is known about this object, so this close passage gives us an incredible opportunity to learn a lot,” said Lance Benner, scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.