NASA Reports A Five Asteroid Parade Will Brush Past Earth This Weekend
This weekend will provide avid astronomers with a parade of asteroids zipping past Earth. In fact, there will be a total of five airplane-sized asteroids joining the procession between Saturday and Monday.
Just last month, a bus-sized asteroid made its way past Earth on Asteroid Day, the anniversary of the 1908 event in Siberia which sent seismic shockwaves as far away as England. Luckily, none of the five asteroids making their way past Earth this weekend will come close enough to pose any danger. They should, however, be close enough for even amateur astronomers to track through the sky.
Asteroid NEO 2022 QP4, is a bus-sized asteroid with a diameter of around 40 feet. It flew by Earth on August 27th in the early morning hours. The asteroid zoomed by at 15,534 mph, while at a distance of 867,857 miles, or approximately 3.6 times the distance between Earth and the Moon.
A second asteroid, NEO 2022 QQ4, is also hurtling past Earth today. This piece of space rock is over twice the size as NEO 2022 QP4, with a diameter of 110 feet. This asteroid is quite a bit further from Earth, with its closest approach being 3,680,000 miles from Earth.
The parade will continue on Sunday, as Asteroid 2022 QX4 dashes by. It comes in at a hefty 100 feet across, according to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). QX4 will be 3,420,000 miles from Earth at its closest approach, and won't make another appearance until August 16, 2025.
Coming through on August 29, NEO 2022 QX4 has a diameter of 140 feet, and will be making its way past Earth at a safe distance of 1,140,000 miles away. A third asteroid, NEO 2017 BU, will also make an appearance on Sunday. It is slightly smaller, at 100 feet in diameter.
If you happen to miss the weekend parade, you will get another chance to catch a glimpse of a fly-by asteroid on Wednesday, August 31, 2022. Asteroid 2022 QX1 is another rock measuring around 140 feet in diameter, and will be a mere, but safe, 1,280,000 miles from Earth.