Asteroid three times Big Ben is approaching Earth: it is the closest passage until 2181


A taller asteroid than Big Ben and a soccer field is getting closer to Earth. At the beginning of next week it will reach the minimum distance from our planet along its orbit.

To monitor its path is NASA, which has known this celestial rocky body for some time. It is called 441987 or 2010 NY65 and according to current estimates, its diameter can range from 140 to 310 meters. It could be three times larger than London’s Big Ben. A real giant that, if it ended up on Earth, would create some headaches.

Fortunately, this will not be the case. On June 24, 2010 NY65 will reach the point closest to Earth in its orbit but will still be at a safe distance, about 0.041 astronomical units or 3.7 million km from us. We can therefore rest assured.

Although it may seem distant, its passage is classified by NASA as a “close approach”. These objects are always special guards, not to mention that during the passage, the asteroid will travel at astounding speeds, up to 12.89 kilometers per second. NASA’s JPL classified 2010 NY65 as a “potentially dangerous asteroid” due to the close passageways expected with Earth.



Fortunately, the odds of hitting us are extremely low. It orbits the sun every 366 days. June 24 will not be the only visit we will receive from this asteroid. Indeed, they are expected 28 close approaches in the coming decades, but this year’s is the closest of the century, or rather of the next 161 years.

Only in 2181 will it be closer, reaching a distance of 3.2 million km.

Reference sources: Spacereference, Spaceweather, Nasa

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