Massive Football Field-Sized Asteroid Comes Close to Earth in Surprise Flyby

The Chelyabinsk meteorite causing sharp explosions and injurig many

Little did people, including scientists at NASA know that a massive asteroid, the size of a football field, came really close to Earth.

The asteroid, dubbed 2018 GE3, was spotted less than a day before its close encounter with our planet, shows the Minor Planet Center of the International Astronomical Union. Nearly all of the asteroids come from the asteroid belt between Aris-Zeus. The asteroids which are present in this belt do not pose any threat to the Earth. Astronomers have increased their programs to seek near-Earth asteroids like 2018 GE3, but sometimes - like this time and as in 2013 with the Chelyabinsk event - asteroids do still surprise us.

The newfound asteroid was estimated to be 48 to110 meters (157 to 360 feet) in diameter.

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The asteroid that flew by Earth Sunday was up to six times the size of the meteor that exploded over Russia's Ural Mountains in Chelyabinsk back in February 2013.

The April asteroid, however, traveling at a speed of about 66,000 miles per hour, would have likely broken down "due to friction with the air" as soon as it entered Earth's atmosphere, EarthSky reported. And that particular asteroid was estimated to have produced about 185 times more energy than the Hiroshima atomic bomb, the report said. "Should the 2018 GE3 have impacted Earth, it would have caused a significant amount of damage, however, it would have been regional, not global damage", a space and weather website reported. But according to Andrew Rader, a researcher and engineer at SpaceX, 2018 GE3 is "vast enough to destroy a city".

Planet Earth had a narrow escape over the weekend when a huge space rock barely missed us. Very first observed at Catalina Sky Study in Arizona on Saturday, April 14, 2018, the asteroid- which has actually been identified 2018 GE3- swept previous us at about half the Earth-moon range early Sunday early morning inning accordance with clocks in The United States and Canada.

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