A “city killer” asteroid will pass between the Moon and Earth this weekend

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A asteroid big enough how to destroy a city it will pass between the Earth and the Moon’s orbit this weekend without touching any of the celestial bodies.

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Saturday’s Close Encounter it will offer astronomers the opportunity to study a space rock just over 100,000 miles (168,000 kilometers) away. That’s less than half the distance between the Earth and the Moon, then it will be visible with binoculars and small telescopes.

Although close-ups of asteroids are common, NASA said it’s rare for one this big to get this close., and which occurs about once every decade. The scientists They estimate its size between 40 and 90 meters (130 and 300 feet).

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The representation of an asteroid, with the planet Earth behind it.

The representation of an asteroid, with the planet Earth behind it.

The asteroid known as 2023 DZ2 It was discovered a month ago and will pass within 320,000 miles (515,000 kilometers) of the Moon on Saturday and over the Indian Ocean several hours later at a speed of about 17,500 miles per hour (28,000 kilometers per hour).

“There is no way this “city killer” crashes to Earthbut its proximity offers a great observation opportunity,” said Richard Moissl, director of planetary defense at the European Space Agency.

Astronomers from the International Asteroid Warning Network consider it good practice for planetary defense in case a dangerous asteroid is heading our way, according to NASA.

The Virtual Telescope Project will offer a live stream online of the passage of the asteroid.

The asteroid won’t cross our path again until 2026. Although at first there seemed to be a possibility that it would crash into Earthscientists ruled it out.

There will be three American and one Canadian astronauts traveling to the Moon in 2024.

There will be three American and one Canadian astronauts traveling to the Moon in 2024.

NASA announces which astronauts will travel to the Moon

NASA and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) will announce the next one April 3 to the four astronauts which will venture into orbit around the Moon in the “Artemis II” space mission, scheduled for the end of 2024.

Agency director Clarence William “Bill” Nelson said there will be “three Americans and one Canadian”. So far, a launch date is scheduled for November 2024, according to the attorney and administrator of the US agency, based in Washington.

The mission, which will last about 10 days, will test the life support systems of the Orion spacecraft.

With information from AP

Source: Clarin

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