NASA has issued a warning about 2021 KT1, a “potentially hazardous” asteroid that will pass close to the Earth on Tuesday (June 1). At 10:24 a.m. EDT, the asteroid will make a near pass to the Earth (7:54pm IST). The massive rock would travel by our planet at a distance of approximately 4.5 million miles. Other asteroids are predicted to pass by the Earth later this week as well.
However, they would be much smaller than the KT1 in 2021. According to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), the 2021 KT1 asteroid could be roughly 186 metres in diameter. This is double the size of the Statue of Liberty, which stands 93 metres tall.Because the asteroid would be 4.5 million miles away during its closest approach, it is unlikely to harm the Earth. When an asteroid approaches Earth within 4.6 million miles and is larger than 150 metres, NASA deems it potentially hazardous.
There are no references to back up whether or not the asteroid will have an impact on Earth. Nonetheless, NASA warns that a Near-Earth Object (NEO) such as an asteroid impacting the Earth should not be a cause for alarm.“The harm to any one individual from road accidents, disease, other natural disasters, and a range of other problems is substantially greater than the hazard from NEOs,” according to the space agency’s Center for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) website.
However, scientists believe that the chances of the Earth being damaged by NEOs over lengthy periods of time are “not negligible,” thus NASA and other space agencies across the world keep a close eye on asteroid and comet events.
Aside from the 2021 KT1, a number of smaller asteroids will pass close to the Earth in the following days. These asteroids could be up to 21 metres in diameter.