Long lost massive asteroid to pass close by the Earth

Asteroid 2010 WC9 on May 9. Image via Daniel Bamberger  Northolt Branch Observatories

Asteroid 2010 WC9 on May 9. Image via Daniel Bamberger Northolt Branch Observatories

The giant asteroid, around the size of the Statue of Liberty, will track a peculiar path and fly between Earth and its natural satellite. When compared to other asteroids that have zipped by the Earth, 2010 WC9 is not a large one, although it's larger compared to the Chelyabinsk meteor, that was 65 feet long.

In fact, even in terms of size, this will be the closest ever approach made by an asteroid this big. On May 8, 2018 - nearly eight years later - astronomers discovered an asteroid and gave it the temporary designation ZJ99C60.

When the house-sized asteroid entered the atmosphere over Chelyabinsk in Russian Federation, it released an energy equivalent to around 440,000 tons of TNT.

The asteroid measures between 60 and 130 metres and is travelling at a speed of more than 28,000mph. The 2010 WC9 is arriving within about "0.53 lunar-distances" from our planet. The 2010 WC9 would reportedly be at the closest distance to our planet at near about "6.05 p.m". However, astronomers believe 2010 WC9 will safely fly by Earth without any damage, according to Tech Times. Hopefully, the space agency's asteroid defense system will be ready before any asteroid gets dangerously too close to our planet.

Thanks to Northolt Branch Observatories, you can actually watch it while flying. Astronomers think that in spite of its dimension as well as range to Earth, 2010 WC9 will securely zoom past the planet.

Unfortunately, the asteroid will not light up brightly enough to be visible to the naked eye, but small telescopes could aid you in the endeavour.

Scientists are paying close attention to a fairly large asteroid that will soon pass through the earth.

"The broadcast will last less than 25 minutes, since the asteroid will cross our field of view during this time period".

On May 8, 2018, an asteroid was spied and given the name Zj99C60 until scientists realized this was the return of Asteroid 2010 WC9.

"We are planning to broadcast this asteroid live to our Facebook page on the night of May 14, likely around midnight, if the weather forecast remains positive".

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