Nine space rocks heading past Earth today
Monday several asteroids are passing by our blue planet, tracked by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).
According to a new study published in Science involving the University of Southampton, the number of asteroids hitting Earth have increased by up to three times over the past 290 million years.
Unlike previous studies that focused on craters on Earth which are often gone due to erosion and other geological processes, this study looked at craters on the Moon.
Researchers believe both celestial bodies have been hit in the same proportion over time, and since the moon is immune to plate tectonics that gradually destroy Earth’s creaters, it’s a perfect place to look.
The study comes as 9 asteroids are heading past Earth today, the closest one named (2019 CN2), with a diameter of 21 feet to 46 feet and traveling at 7.91 kilometers per second. It misses Earth by just 350,013 miles, and will not return until Wednesday Oct 23, 2024.The biggest asteroid passing today is ‘417581 (2006 VA3)’ which is travelling at 32 kilometers per second (71,005 mph) and measure 3,166 feet to 7,080 feet across. Thankfully it is estimated to miss us by 27,091,180 miles this time around, but it will return in February 2021.