Giant ‘planet killer’ asteroid flies just past Earth

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A comparatively giant asteroid flies just past Earth on April 13. Although the distance to the celestial body is about 4.8 million kilometres, according to NASA’s classification, it is still a “potentially hazardous” asteroid.

The 2012 KY3 object is between 540 and 1,200 meters in diameter. Because of this above-average size, the chunk of rock is considered a “planet killer.” This is because the impact of such a chunk would have devastating effects on our planet.

When the asteroid whizzes past Earth, it will do so at a comparatively high speed of about 63,180 km/h (17.55 km/s). There is no danger of an impact.

Once a year, such an event
2012 KY3 is assigned to the 2nd level on NASA’s rarity scale. A level 2 event occurs approximately only once a year. Stage 1 occurs once a month, and stage 3 once every ten years.

By the way, the celestial body flies close to the Earth every few years. According to the current records, it was closer to Earth only in April 1956 than during the recent flyby. The next time it passes by will be in September 2025.

  • source: futurezone.at/picture: pixabay.com
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