NASA ALERT! 129-foot Asteroid Moving Towards Earth: Check Distance, Time And Speed

NASA ALERT! 129-foot Asteroid Moving Towards Earth: Check Distance, Time And Speed
NASA ALERT! 129-foot Asteroid Moving Towards Earth: Check Distance, Time And Speed

Updated May 14, 2024, 17:20 IST

NASA tracks asteroid 2024 JY16, an Apollo group asteroid set to approach Earth on May 15. Here’s everything you need to know about this space rock, from its speed to the time of encounter with our planet.

Asteroid 2024 JY16 is hurtling towards Earth at an alarming speed.

NASA is tracking an airplane-sized asteroid, 2024 JY16, on a course for a close approach to Earth on Wednesday, May 15. The 2024 JY16 is classified as an Apollo group asteroid, known for their orbits that occasionally cross Earth’s path. This space rock is estimated to be 129 feet (39 meters) in diameter, roughly the size of a commercial airplane. Tomorrow, it’s expected to zip past Earth at a staggering speed of 60,492 kilometers per hour (approximately 37,582 miles per hour).

Asteroid 2024 JY16 Distance and Time

The good news is that 2024 JY16 will pose no danger to Earth. It will make its closest approach at 1:10 AM UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) on May 15, maintaining a safe distance of 336,173 kilometers (approximately 208,888 miles) from our planet. That’s a distance greater than the Moon’s orbit around Earth!

NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) continuously tracks asteroids and comets to assess any potential impact threats. They define “potentially hazardous asteroids” as those exceeding 460 feet (140 meters) in size that come within 4.6 million miles (7.5 million kilometers) of Earth’s orbit. Fortunately, 2024 JY16 falls well outside this zone.

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How NASA Tracks Asteroids?

CNEOS relies on data collected by observatories worldwide, with valuable contributions from amateur astronomers. This global network helps determine the orbital paths of near-Earth objects. Additionally, NASA-funded observatories NEOWISE and Pan-STARRS also have a crucial role to play in tracking these celestial bodies.

While the asteroid itself might be too small to see with the naked eye, this event highlights the ongoing efforts to track and understand near-Earth objects. For astronomy enthusiasts with telescopes, keeping an eye out on the night sky around May 15 might offer a chance to catch a glimpse of this asteroid as it streaks past our planet.

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