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Mile-wide asteroid to make its closest pass to Earth in 400 years
A mile-wide ‘potentially hazardous’ asteroid is set to make a relatively close flyby to Earth on Wednesday this week, the U.S. space agency NASA has warned.
The asteroid dubbed the Rock, which is formally known as Object 2014 JO25, will pass by Earth at a distance of 1.1 million miles or roughly 4.6 times the distance between Earth and the Moon. The close flyby is due to take place at 8:24AM ET or 1:24PM BST on Wednesday.
NASA said that it is one of the strongest asteroid radar targets of the year, noting that it is the closest shave we would have had with an asteroid of this size in the last ten years. This asteroid is not expected to come so close to earth again for at least four centuries.
The renowned space agency said in a statement, “The 2017 flyby is the closest by an asteroid at least this large since the encounter by 4179 Toutatis at four lunar distances in September 2004.”
Object 2014 JO25 was first spotted by the Mt. Lemmon Survey in Arizona in May of 2014.
The next known flyby by an asteroid of roughly this size will likely take place when space rock 1999 AN10 will approach within one lunar distance from Earth in August 2027.