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Asteroid ‘Beast’ to Fly By Earth on Sunday

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MEGAN GANNON
Space.com
June 6, 2014

A new-found huge asteroid, nicknamed “The Beast,” is expected zoom by Earth this weekend.

The asteroid 2014 HQ124, which is the size of a football stadium, poses no chance of hitting Earth in its flyby on Sunday (June 8), and will pass by at a range of three times the distance between the Earth-moon on Sunday (June 8). It was discovered on April 23 by NASA’s Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer, a sky-mapping space telescope.

The mammoth asteroid 2014 HQ124 is about 1,100 feet (352 meters) across, according to scientists with NASA’s Asteroid Watch program at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. [Potentially Dangerous Asteroids (Photos and Images)]

Asteroid 2014 HQ124 will be traveling up to 31,000 mph (14 km/s) — 17 times faster than a shot from a high-speed rifle — when it makes its closest approach to Earth on Sunday at 1:56 a.m. EDT (0556 GMT) at three lunar distances away. One lunar distance, or the distance between the Earth and the moon, is about 238,855 miles (384,400 kilometers).

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This article was posted: Friday, June 6, 2014 at 6:02 am





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