Asteroid 2022 NF — an asteroid the dimensions of a small bus — might be whizzing previous the Earth at this time at simply 90,000 kilometres away, at a velocity of 11.37 km/s. The house rock, estimated to measure between 5.5 and 12.5 meters, was solely recognized on July 4 though it could be at a distance of simply 23 p.c of the space between the Earth and the moon. Regardless of this proximity, the Nationwide Aeronautics and House Administration’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory has calculated that the asteroid will safely move by the planet. Beginner astronomers may also be capable of see the asteroid at this time.
Scientists recognized the asteroid, named 2022 NF, utilizing the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Fast Response System (Pan-STARRS). Pan-STARRS is a system of telescopes, cameras and computer systems that has been surveying the evening sky for near-earth objects. Close to-earth objects are outlined by NASA as celestial objects (asteroids and comets) whose closest distance to the Solar is lower than 1.3 AU (194,500,000 km).
House businesses internationally preserve a eager eye on such objects as a probably giant comet or asteroid that might theoretically influence the Earth and trigger widespread destruction on the planet, presumably even resulting in an extinction occasion. Nevertheless, most asteroids that move by near the Earth are far smaller than the definition of the ‘probably hazardous asteroids’ that NASA has set. PHAs are outlined as asteroids which have a dimension of not less than 140 metres in diameter and get inside 7,480,000 km of the planet. Whereas 2022 NF flies by a lot nearer than that, it’s far smaller than what could be labeled as a PHA.
The danger of probably lethal asteroids, although infinitesimally small, has prompted NASA to deploy its DART (Double Asteroid Redirection Check) spacecraft which is able to take a look at out the potential of making an attempt to slam a rocket right into a careening asteroid to vary its trajectory earlier than it might probably hit the Earth. DART will slam into its supposed goal, which isn’t on a course in direction of the planet, later this yr as a part of the take a look at.
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