While we know that asteroids are zooming around in space all the time when we hear about one coming past our planet or near our planet we tend to get a bit tense. Sure, the chances of an asteroid hitting us are usually pretty slim and most wouldn’t make much of an impact if they did make their way here, but we still get quite confused, don’t we?
Chances are you may have heard that there is an asteroid set to pass our planet by on Christmas day, right? Well, that’s not something you should be too worked up about but if you wanna know more about it, you’re in the right place. This asteroid is quite big and actually appears to be quite large.
According to IB Times, this space rock is flowing through space is ‘taller than the Space Needle in Seattle.’ This asteroid is called 2014 SD224, and it’s not considered a threat at the moment as it is unlikely to come in contact with our home planet. While it’s not the only asteroid causing buzz this weekend, it’s one of the most noteworthy.
This asteroid is not listed by the NEA as a risk, and we shouldn’t think too much about it overall. It should not be ruining our holiday fun and overall it’s just another thing in the sky we will not realize was ever here until it’s already gone, unless you’re someone researching it. It is going to be passing us by at a distance of roughly 1.9 million miles and well, we shouldn’t be freaking out over it.
Fox News wrote as follows on this topic covering this asteroid and noting a couple others as well:
The largest space rock, known as asteroid 501647 (2014 SD224), is slated to come within 1.9 million miles of Earth and is thought to have a diameter as great as 689 feet. At its size and distance, it is considered a “potentially hazardous” Near-Earth Object (NEO), but it poses no threat to the planet when it zips past later this week.
“Potentially hazardous” NEOs are defined as space objects that come within 0.05 astronomical units and measure more than 460 feet in diameter, NASA explained. According to a 2018 report by Planetary.org, there are more than 18,000 NEOs.
This asteroid last made a close approach to Earth on Jan. 26, 2020, and will not do so again until Dec. 18, 2021, NASA added.
In addition to asteroid 501647 (2014 SD224), two other asteroids will safely fly past Earth on Christmas Day — 2020 XY and 2020 YM1. Both are considered NEOs as well, and, like asteroid 501647, pose no threat to Earth.
In 2018, NASA unveiled a 20-page plan that outlined the steps the U.S. should take to be better prepared for NEOs, such as asteroids and comets that come within 30 million miles of the planet.
What do you think about things like this? I, for one, love learning about what’s going on in the sky. That being said, I can’t help but feel uneasy when I hear about asteroids and things of that nature even if I know that they’re not going to be making an impact here on our planet.