Could this approaching asteroid impact Earth and cause catastrophic damage? This is what NASA had to say about this space rock.
Asteroids are near-Earth objects (NEOs) that are often found orbiting the Sun in the main asteroid belt near Jupiter. NASA defines NEOs as an object whose orbit takes it within a zone of approximately 195 million kilometers from the Sun, which means that it can pass within about 50 million kilometers of Earth’s orbit. Asteroids are typically the most common NEOs that come close to Earth’s orbit. Most of them burn up and disintegrate before reaching the planet, but some can still pass through it. Now, NASA has warned that another one is already on the way today.
Asteroid 2022 UV20 details
Asteroid 2022 UV20 is part of the Apollo asteroid group. According to the-sky.org, this asteroid takes almost 617 days to complete one orbit of the Sun, during which its farthest distance from the Sun is 288 million kilometers and the closest distance is 136 million kilometers.
Asteroid 2022 UV20 is headed toward Earth today, November 9, at a breakneck speed of 30,303 kilometers per hour, according to NASA. The 64-foot space rock will make its closest approach to the planet at a distance of almost 2.9 million kilometers. Although asteroid 2022 UV20 is not expected to hit Earth, it has been classified as a Potentially Hazardous Object due to the proximity it will pass by Earth.
A slight deviation in its path due to interaction with the planet’s gravitational field could change its trajectory and send it hurtling toward Earth.
NASA studies the asteroid Bennu
NASA’s JPL has been observing an asteroid called Bennu that orbits the sun every 1.2 years and makes a relatively close approach to Earth about every six years. The space agency mapped the trajectory of asteroid Bennu, which has a diameter of almost 500 meters, using the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft until the year 2135 using 29 radar and 478 optical observations of the asteroid, made by trackers around the world. between September 1999 and January 2011.
According to NASA’s JPL, the approach to Earth in the year 2135 will change the asteroid’s trajectory somewhat and could cause an impact on Earth between 2175 and 2199.