The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) announced on 8 April 2017 that a big asteroid will fly safely past Earth on 19 April 2017 at a distance of about 1.8 million kilometres.
Although there is no possibility for the asteroid to collide with Earth, this will be a very close approach for an asteroid of this size.
The asteroid is known as 2014 JO25.
The next known encounter of an asteroid of comparable size will occur in 2027 when the 800-metre-wide asteroid 1999 AN10 will fly by at one lunar distance, about 380000 kilometres.
About 2014 JO25
• The 2014 JO25 is a near-earth asteroid.
• It was discovered in May 2014 by the Catalina Sky Survey as part of NASA's NEO Observations Program.
• The asteroid measures some 650 meters in size with an optical albedo of 0.25 as measured by NASA's NEOWISE mission.
• Its surface is about twice as reflective as that of the Moon.
• As of now, little is known about the object’s physical properties, even though its trajectory is well known.
• The asteroid will approach Earth from the direction of the Sun and will become visible in the night sky after 19 April 2017.
• It is predicted to brighten to about magnitude 11, when it could be visible in small optical telescopes for one or two nights before it fades as the distance from Earth rapidly increases.
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