A “city-killer” asteroid whizzed by Earth on Thursday, startling astronomers who didn’t pick up the rock’s trajectory until days before it passed the planet, according to a report.
The rock, dubbed Asteroid 2019 OK, passed within 43,500 miles of Earth traveling at a speed of 15 miles a second, the Sydney Morning Herald first reported.
The asteroid, which was estimated to be between 187 feet and 427 feet in diameter, was discovered this week by two astronomy teams in Brazil and the US — and confirmed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab.
It’s the largest rock to pass by Earth this year — and possibly even this decade.
“This is one of the closest approaches to Earth by an asteroid that we know of. And it’s a pretty large one,” Michael Brown, an associate professor at Monash University’s school of physics and astronomy told the paper. – READ MORE