Huge asteroid safely passes close to Earth

·1 min read
Huge asteroid safely passes close to Earth

A comet more than three times the size of the Empire State Building got up close to Earth's orbit Tuesday afternoon but was far enough to avoid turning into a sci-fi disaster movie, according to astronomers.

PHOTO: A 1 kilometer-sized asteroid, 7842 (1994 PC1), is poised to pass near earth Tuesday afternoon. Scientists say there is no danger to the planet. (NASA)
PHOTO: A 1 kilometer-sized asteroid, 7842 (1994 PC1), is poised to pass near earth Tuesday afternoon. Scientists say there is no danger to the planet. (NASA)

Asteroid 7482 (1994 PC1) flew by Earth around 4:51 p.m., according to NASA, which has been tracking the object for decades through its planetary defense systems.

MORE: NASA's asteroid mission may show how planet with metal core, like Earth, formed

Researchers say the asteroid, which measures 1 kilometer in diameter, came around .01325 Astronomical Units, or 1.2 million miles, away from Earth's atmosphere.

PHOTO: A 1 kilometer-sized asteroid, 7842 (1994 PC1), is poised to pass near earth Tuesday afternoon. Scientists say there is no danger to the planet. (NASA)
PHOTO: A 1 kilometer-sized asteroid, 7842 (1994 PC1), is poised to pass near earth Tuesday afternoon. Scientists say there is no danger to the planet. (NASA)

That distance didn't pose any threat to the Earth, according to researchers.

The last time the asteroid was this close to Earth's orbit was 89 years ago when it flew 0.00752 AU, roughly 699,000 miles, away from the planet, NASA data showed.

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The next time the asteroid will come this close to Earth will be in 2105 when it will fly 0.01556 AU, roughly 1.4 million miles, away from Earth.

Huge asteroid safely passes close to Earth originally appeared on abcnews.go.com

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