"Surprise" Asteroid Makes Close Flyby to Earth

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An asteroid whose size is about a football field fly close to the Earth on Sunday and it is said to be one of the closet encounters for the planets.

The asteroid was first perceived by astronomers at the Catalina Telescope at the University of Arizona, only 21 hours before its nearest passage from Earth on Monday morning broadcasts the Athenian-Macedonian News Agency.

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The most disturbing thing about 2018 GE3 is that it wasn't spotted until it was very close to Earth, giving scientist little time to prepare or assess what the damage might be if the asteroid entered the atmosphere. The estimated diameter of the space rock ranged from 131 to 328 feet, CNEOS reports. The orbit appears to extend to the inner part of the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. The asteroid was discovered just one day before it flies close to the earth surface and this is what scientists are calling as " surprise" flyby.

Earthsky.org reported: "An Apollo type earth-crossing asteroid, was flying through space at 66,174 miles per hour". That's about three to six times wider than the space rock that penetrated the Earth's atmosphere in 2013 and exploded over the city of Chelyabinsk in Russian Federation, packing 20 to 30 times the energy of the Hiroshima atomic bomb, notes EarthSky.

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"It might make you feel better (or worse) to know that asteroids enter Earth's atmosphere unnoticed on a fairly regular basis". The said object injured more than 1,200 people while damaging thousands of buildings up to 93 kilometers away from the impact site. "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.

If asteroid 2018 GE3 had hit Earth, a great portion of the space rock might have disintegrated. But according to Andrew Rader, a researcher and engineer at SpaceX, 2018 GE3 is "vast enough to destroy a city".

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