Asteroid will pass 22 thousand km from the earth, lower than the orbit of some satellites

Science

By CAPosts 23 September, 2020 - 03:33pm 65 views

© Editorial Medio Tiempo Asteroid 2020 SW will pass very close to the earth. (Image: NASA) An asteroid the size of a school bus is heading toward the vicinity of our planet, but NASA says the space rock will pass safely , albeit below the orbit of some satellites . The newly discovered asteroid will reach a minimum distance of 22,000 kilometers (13,000 miles) from Earth, well below many of the communications satellites orbiting Earth, scientists said this week. The closest approach will occur Thursday morning over the southeastern Pacific Ocean. Once it's gone, the asteroid wo n't return to Earth's neighborhood until 2041.

Scientists estimate that the space rock measures between 15 and 30 feet , which is considered "insignificant" by asteroid standards. Bodies of this size are pulled in by the Earth's gravitational pull and burn up in the atmosphere once every year or two , explained Paul Chodas, director of the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The NASA. There could be up to 100 million of these small asteroids in the Earth's neighborhood. The real threat is asteroids that are considerably larger. The good news is that these are easier to detect much earlier than a few days. Asteroid 2020 SW, as it is known, was discovered last Friday by the Catalina Sky Survey center at the University of Arizona in Tucson.