Massive ‘city-killer’ asteroid is heading dangerously close to the Earth

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Updated: August 26, 2019 7:45:43 PM

An asteroid named '162082 (1998 HL1)' has been declared a potentially hazardous asteroid.

asteroid, NASA,The asteroid 1998 HL1 is travelling at a speed of approximately 25,000 miles per hour. (Representational Image: Thinkstock)

An asteroid named 162082 (1998 HL1) is heading towards the Earth. The asteroid is considerably big and is heading towards the planet at a speed of approximately 25,000 miles per hour. The American space agency, NASA, claimed that the asteroid is quite big and has a diameter of approximately 3,248 feet. An asteroid this big can easily wipe-out an entire city. The asteroid is at least thrice the size of Eiffel Tower. The asteroid 162082 (1998 HL1) will come very close to the Earth in October 2019. Though there are negligible chances that it will enter our atmosphere or hit our planet. Experts said that the asteroid will come considerably close to the Earth. An asteroid impact is one of the considerable threats which can lead to a mass extinction of flora and fauna. An asteroid impact can lead to mega-tsunamis, shock waves, and other catastrophic disasters. Recently, more than 10 such giant asteroids have zoomed past the Earth. ASteroids including 2019 OK, 2019 OD, 2015 HM10, 2019 OE, 2019 NN3, 2019 MB4, 2019 MT2, 2006 QV89, 2016 NO56M, RF12 among others came considerable close to our planet but did not hit the Earth.

The NASA’s Center for near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) in a statement said, “An asteroid 162082 (1998 HL1), which has a diameter of 3,248 ft is expected to approach Earth on October 25 at 0121 hours EDT. The asteroid 1998 HL1 is travelling at a speed of approximately 25,000 miles per hour. It will fly past the Earth at a distance of 0.04155 astronomical units or 3.9 million miles from the Earth’s centre.”

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Since the 1998 HL1 undergoes a close-interaction with the Earth’s orbit, the CNEOS has labelled it as potentially hazardous asteroid. The CNEOS stated that “An astroid’s potential to make threatening close approach to the Earth based on certain parameters is defined as Potentially hazardous asteroids.” It added that “all the asteroids that have a minimum orbit intersection distance of 0.05 astronomical unit or less and an absolute magnitude of 22.0 or less are considered dangerous and termed as potentially hazardous asteroids.”

The 162082 (1998 HL1) will fly past the Earth again on October 15, 2026, at a distance of 0.28041 astronomical units or roughly 26 million miles. A report published in spacetelescope.org suggests that as many as 7 lakh asteroids have been found in the ‘Main Belt’ which is the area between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.

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