Large asteroid to pass by Earth on March 21: NASA

Asha Bajaj
2 min readMar 14, 2021

#NASA; #Asteroid; #NearEarthObjectStudies; #SpectrumOfLight

Washington/Canadian-Media: The largest asteroid to pass by Earth this year will approach within some 1.25 million miles (two million kilometers) of our planet on March 21, NASA said Thursday.

A NASA handout image of an asteroid. Image credit: phys.org/news

The US space agency said it will allow astronomers to get a rare close look at an asteroid.

The asteroid, 2001 FO32, is estimated to be about 3,000 feet in diameter and was discovered 20 years ago, NASA said.

“We know the orbital path of 2001 FO32 around the Sun very accurately,” said Paul Chodas, director of the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies. “There is no chance the asteroid will get any closer to Earth than 1.25 million miles.”

That is roughly 5.25 times the distance of the Earth from the Moon but still close enough for 2001 FO32 to be classified as a “potentially hazardous asteroid.”

NASA said 2001 FO32 will pass by at about 77,000 miles per hour faster than the speed at which most asteroids encounter Earth.

“Currently, little is known about this object, so the very close encounter provides an outstanding opportunity to learn a great deal about this asteroid,” said Lance Benner, principal scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

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Asha Bajaj

I write on national and international Health, Politics, Business, Education, Environment, Biodiversity, Science, First Nations, Humanitarian, gender, women