NASA alert: Three asteroids to pass Earth by a narrow margin; Check speed, size and more

In the last few months, asteroid flybys have become a common occurrence. These space rocks, also known as minor planets, are rocky, airless remnants of the early formation of our solar system about 4.6 billion years ago. According to NASA, the current asteroid count is 1,351,400, with most of them revolving around the Sun in the main asteroid belt located between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Now, the US space agency has shed light on three asteroids which have been observed moving towards Earth in their orbit and are expected to pass by the planet today, April 2.

Also Read: What are asteroids and how ESA is tracking them

Asteroid 2024 FR3

NASA has designated the first asteroid to pass Earth today as Asteroid 2024 FR3. It is expected to pass Earth at a distance of just 1.3 million kilometres. As per the US Space Agency, the asteroid is travelling in its orbit at a speed of 38424 kilometres per hour which is even faster than the speed of the International Space Station (ISS)!

In terms of size, Asteroid 2024 FR3 is approximately 78 feet wide, making it almost as big as a house. It belongs to the Apollo group of Near-Earth Asteroids, which are Earth-crossing space rocks with semi-major axes larger than Earth’s. These asteroids are named after the humongous 1862 Apollo asteroid, discovered by German astronomer Karl Reinmuth in the 1930s.

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Asteroid 2024 FG3

The second asteroid has been given the designation of Asteroid 2024 FG3. NASA says it is moving towards Earth in its orbit at a speed of 54371 kilometres per hour. NASA expects this space rock to fly past Earth at a distance of approximately 3.1 million kilometres.

In terms of size, Asteroid 2024 FG3 has a width of almost 100 feet, which means it is also as big as an aircraft. The asteroid also belongs to the Apollo group of asteroids.

Asteroid 2024 FN3

The last asteroid to pass Earth today has been designated Asteroid 2024 FN3 by NASA CNEOS. During its close approach, it will come as close as 6.7 million kilometres to the planet and is already travelling it in its orbit around the Sun at a speed of 25787 kilometres per hour. This asteroid is also 100 feet wide, which makes it the same size as an aircraft. 

Also Read: 10 breathtaking images of Earth captured from the International Space Station

Asteroid 2024 FN3 is the largest of them all, with a width of nearly 52 feet. It also belongs to the Apollo group of asteroids.

While all three asteroids are predicted to pass Earth by a close margin and have been termed Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs), they are not likely to impact the surface and cause any damage.

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