Massive 774-Meter-Long Asteroid Is About To Fly By Really Close To Earth – Mashable India

September 2021 will witness several asteroids passing Earth, way too close for comfort.

According to NASA JPL near-Earth objects tracker, the largest of the asteroids—known as 2010 RJ53—will pass by Earth on September 9 of this month.

The object is expected to get as close as 366,000 km from Earth, or nearly the distance between the Earth and the Moon. At 774 meters in diameter, the object is one of the biggest asteroids to have passed close by Earth this year.

Additionally, two other asteroids are also expected to fly by Earth this month.

The 2021 NY1, between 130 to 300 meters in size, is expected to pass the Earth on September 22 at a distance of 14,98,113kms. The asteroid traveling at speeds of over 33,600 KPH is classified as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (PHA) by NASA.

Finally, on September 11, the asteroid 2021 PT, is expected to fly by Earth at a distance of 49,00,000 kilometers. The asteroid is expected to be around 137 meters in diameter and is the least likely object to hit Earth.

The distances at which these celestial objects will pass Earth may seem huge, but the orbits of asteroids are very unstable and prone to gravitational influence from other larger bodies such as the Earth itself. The larger an asteroid is the higher the chances for gravitational influence.

The speeds at which they are traveling are also a cause for concern, as even a slight change in direction could skew the distance by thousands or even hundreds of thousands of kilometers. At those speeds, the massive distance between the Earth and the Moon seems trivial.

However, according to NASA, for at least another hundred years, the risk of any asteroid making contact with Earth’s atmosphere is very little.

Cover Photo: Shutterstock

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