The “city killer” asteroid will pass Earth tonight from a safe distance

The "city killer" asteroid will pass Earth tonight from a safe distance
Illustration of asteroid 2012 DA14, which passed Earth in February 2013 without hitting it.

NOS News

When hearing “2023 DZ2” everyone might not think of rocks and space telescopes. In this regard, the term used by the European Space Agency (ESA) speaks more of fantasy: City killer. Tonight, an asteroid with that nickname will pass past Earth — without actually destroying cities, by the way.

the name City killer It has to do with the size of the rock, which, according to scientists, has a diameter of 40 to 100 meters. Asteroids of this size are capable of causing massive damage if they hit the Earth. But while 2023 DZ2 is relatively close to Earth tonight, space-wise, astronomers rule that scenario out.

It can be seen around 8:50 p.m

The European Space Agency expects the asteroid to fly at an altitude of about 168,000 km, less than half the distance between Earth and the Moon. The object will likely be closest to Earth at around 8:50 pm Netherland time and the space rock can then be seen using a small telescope or binoculars. The Virtual Telescope Project is also offering one tonight Live broadcast on me.

Although asteroids frequently pass Earth, according to NASA, large boulders like 2023 DZ2 are much less common, according to NASA. According to the US Space Agency, this happens approximately once every ten years.

Earlier we gave this overview of the chance of an asteroid hitting Earth:

At first, scientists thought there was a possibility that the stone might hit the ground, but now they have changed their minds. So the Earth will not be in danger even in three years.

It is very rare for a major asteroid impact to occur on Earth. But according to the European Space Agency, small and medium-sized space rocks can also do a lot of damage. For example, in 2013, an asteroid measuring 17 to 20 meters exploded over Chelyabinsk in Russia. Astronomers estimated that it released approximately 20 to 30 times the energy released by the Hiroshima atomic bomb. Flying debris after the explosion injured about 1,200 people.

The most famous asteroid collision was about 65 million years ago. Then a space rock called ‘Chicxulub’, about 10 kilometers in diameter, declared the end of the dinosaurs’ life.

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