On Sunday, March 21, the 2001 FO32 asteroid will pass near Earth at 120,000 kilometers per hour, in one of the most anticipated events by astronomers of the year.
Despite much speculation about the potential danger that this celestial body, which has a diameter of 550 meters, could form it to the safety of the planet, according to NASA, the asteroid will pass at a safe distance.
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This was pointed out by Paul Chodas, director of the Center for the Study of Near-Earth Objects (Cneos), which is run by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California.
“We know the orbital path FO32 of 2001 around the Sun very accurately, as it was detected 20 years ago and has been tracked ever since,” the expert said.
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In this way it becomes clear that according to the study of its orbit, there is no risk of collision.
Despite this, since its discovery in 2001, FO32 has made it onto the list of potentially dangerous asteroids. According to the classification, this category includes objects that pass at a distance of less than 7.5 million kilometers from the Earth and have a diameter of more than 140 meters.
In this case, the object will pass 2 million kilometers from our planet and have a diameter of 550 meters. However, for now, it has not been found to pose an imminent or even imminent danger in the coming decades.
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Either way, this celestial event will delight astronomers, given it is the most visible rocky celestial body of the year. This will allow studies of these objects, which are generally located in the belt of Mars and Jupiter, to continue.
Scientists say that the asteroids that move near the Earth come exactly from within this belt, but their orbit would have been changed by the planets’ gravitational force.* With information from Europa Press
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