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Tech & Science A "potentially dangerous" asteroid will soon graze the Earth

21:30  01 december  2021
21:30  01 december  2021 Source:   maxisciences.com

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Illustration d'un astéroide dans le ciel étoilé. © provided by Gentside illustration of an asteroid in the starry sky.

" potentially dangerous ", this is how NASA ranks the asteroid 4660 Nereus , which will increase to 3.9 million kilometers from the Earth, December 11, 2021.

No real threat of impact

Let's raise the suspense right now: there is no real danger of impact with the Earth . However, the astronomers of the American space agency monitor it closely, because it is the spatial rock the biggest and fastest to approach the earth in this year 2021.

indeed, If the distance of nearly 4 million kilometers may seem important to our humans, it is not at the astronomical scale. An asteroid is considered

as "potentially dangerous" (PHO), when the distance that separates its orbit from the earth is less than 0.05 astronomical units, or less than 149 million kilometers about .

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"Nereus", a large asteroid like the Eiffel Tower to represent the speed to which Nereus moves, it would be

once faster than the aircraft F-16 . Discovered in February 1982 by the United States Astronomer Eleonor Francis Helin from the Astronomical Observatory of Palomar (United States), the researchers also know him as " 1982 dB ".

Its diameter is

330 meters , hence the comparison with the Eiffel Tower, and its rotation period is 15.1 hours . According to the Center for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) of NASA , it should be only 1.2 million kilometers from the Earth, by 2060 . Not to miss anything from our news, subscribe to

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