May 092017
 

A large asteroid passed near Earth on Wednesday, April 19, without posing any danger to our planet. “Although there was no possibility that the asteroid would collide with Earth, yet the event was seen as a “close encounter” considering the size of the space rock,” NASA said in a statement.

Asteroid 2014-JO25

Asteroid 2014 JO25 buzzed Earth on April 19, 2017. Photo credit: NASA

Asteroid 2014-JO25 was found to be about 1300 meters in length instead of 650m as initially thought, and buzzed mankind from 1,768,239 kilometers away, which is about 4.6 times the distance between Earth and Moon.

The asteroid whizzed past Earth after passing near the Sun and will continue its journey to Jupiter before returning to the center of our solar system.

NASA says this encounter is the closest this asteroid has come to Earth for at least the last 400 years and will be its closest approach for at least the next 500 years.

Im the meantime, the next visit of a large celestial body is expected to happen in August 2027, when the 800 meter-long asteroid 199-AN10 will come as close as 380,000 km (one lunar distance).

The 2017 flyby of 2014-JO25 is “an exceptional opportunity” for astronomers and space-enthusiasts, said NASA. Its surface is twice as bright as that of the Moon and should be visible with the help of a small telescope, for one or two nights, added the agency.

Video: Asteroid 2014 JO25 flying past Earth on April 19, 2017

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