Whale-sized asteroid capable of DESTROYING a major city skimmed past our planet at just a third of the distance between Earth and the moon – and NASA didn’t even notice

Friday, December 8, 2017
By Paul Martin

The asteroid, known as 2017 VL2, travelled by Earth on November 9
2017 VL2 flew by at around 73,000 miles (117,480 km) from our planet
This is around a third of the distance between Earth and the moon
It has now emerged NASA did not find out about it until a day later

8 December 2017

An asteroid that could have obliterated an area the size of New York city skimmed past Earth at speeds of nearly 5.5 miles per second (9km/s).

The whale-sized space rock – called 2017 VL2 – was just 73,000 miles (117,480 km) from our planet when it sped by – which is just a third of the distance between Earth and the moon.

Shockingly, it was only spotted by NASA astronomers the day after it passed.

The potentially lethal space rock was first observed at Mauna Loa observatory in Hawaii at 11:24 UTC (23:24 GMT) on November 10.

However, the rock was already careering away, having skimmed past Earth on November 9 at around 09:50 UTC (21:50 GMT).

If it had hit Earth, it could have flattened life within 3.7 miles (6km) of the area of collision.

The space rock, which measured between 52 – 105 feet (16 and 32m) in diameter, belongs to the Apollo group of asteroids, writes The Watchers.

The space rock is not set to pass Earth again until 2125.

The Apollo asteroids are near-Earth asteroids discovered by German astronomer Karl Reinmuth in the 1930s.
The number of known Apollo asteroids currently stands at over 8,000.

Almost 1,500 of the Apollo asteroids are large enough and may get close enough to Earth to become potentially hazardous asteroids.

The Rest…HERE

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