Astéroïde géant près de la terre

Earth is about to be grazed by a huge asteroid

Understanding the universe and sky observation allowed men to anticipate possible meteoric threats. Until recently, astronomers were able to predict the passage of a giant asteroid close to Earth. According to their forecasts, this meteorite relatively more gigantic than the Empire State Building will touch the globe next week.

Measuring 1 km long, it actually has 2.5 times the size of the Empire State Building. Because of its size and its regular passages near the planet, it is now included on the list of meteorites at potential risk. Nevertheless, no one should fear this visit, since the asteroid will fly over the globe at nearly 1.93 million km.

In addition, the estimates of its trajectory are accompanied by a margin of error minimum of 133 kilometers. Therefore, the probability that the Earth will be struck by this meteorite is very minimal. However, it will be very close to the planet on January 18 at 4:51 p.m. EST (9:51 p.m. UTC).

An asteroid known from previous visits

Baptized asteroid (7482) 1994 PC1, this space rock was initially spotted by the astronomer Robert McNaught in the course of the year 1994. Scientists have reassembled its trajectory until September 1974 in order to find pictures of the stellar pebble. It is therefore reasonable to have confidence in its orbital progression. In reality, the duration of his orbital arc does not exceed 47 years, ie the time elapsed between two observations in the starry sky.

In addition, his last pass near the globe was recorded on January 17, 1933, 89 years earlier. The asteroid was then seen within a radius of 1.1 million kilometers, or approximately 699,000 miles. It is expected to be at this same distance on January 18, 2105.

A safe passage similar to that of a shooting star

The space meteorite will certainly pass right next to the planet, but without risk of collision. More interestingly, stargazers and amateur astronomers will see a large pebble move speeding. The speed of progress of this one is impressive: 19.56 Km / s from the firmament. Thus, the asteroid will be similar to a star, but it will cross the vault of heaven during the evening.

“On the other hand, it will be less visible to the naked eye than with binoculars at magnitude 10. However, those who have a home telescope of 6 inches minimum will be able to see it when it passes by. ”

Eddie Irizarry.

SOURCE: SCIENCEALERT

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