It's classified as a "Near-Earth Object" or "NEO."
An asteroid classified as NY1 is hurtling through space at insane speeds, says NASA. The asteroid is set to pass us here on Earth, but it's still close enough for NASA to call it a "potentially hazardous Near-Earth Object (NEO)."
A NEO is "an asteroid or comet that approaches our planet less than 1.3 times the distance from Earth to the Sun."
"Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) are comets and asteroids that have been nudged by the gravitational attraction of nearby planets into orbits that allow them to enter the Earth’s neighborhood," NASA's official NEO website says. "Composed mostly of water ice with embedded dust particles, comets originally formed in the cold outer planetary system while most of the rocky asteroids formed in the warmer inner solar system between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. The scientific interest in comets and asteroids is due largely to their status as the relatively unchanged remnant debris from the solar system formation process some 4.6 billion years ago."
NASA experts say that NY1 is flying through space at nearly 21,000 miles per hour but it's only between 427 and 984 feet wide.
On September 22, the asteroid is expected to pass Earth, with its closest point coming within 930,487 miles—for contrast, the moon is about 240,000 miles from the planet. Space Reference, a website that collects data from NASA and other databases, has created an orbit simulation of the predicted flyby.
As stated previously, this asteroid will pass by us and have no impact. So, sorry. No apocalypse this year (not yet anyway).
Analysts at SpaceReference believe the next time the NY1 asteroid will be close enough to be considered a NEO will be on September 23, 2105.
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