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Earth Has Close Encounter With Asteroid 2012 DA14

FEBRUARY 15, 2013

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A 150-ft-wide asteroid 2012 DA14 zoomed past the Earth from a very close range today, closer than communication and weather satellites. It was the closest  fly-by for an object of this size.


The asteroid was 17,100 miles away when it zipped past the Earth. Even the chance of an asteroid-satellite hit was remote. Not visible with a naked eye, the asteroid is small as these things go. In contrast, the one that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago was 6 mile wide.



                                    Image Courtesy: India Today



Had it impacted the Earth, it would have released massive energy - equal to 2.4 million tons of TNT and wiped out 750 square miles. That's what happened in Siberia in 1908, when forest land  was flattened by an exploding asteroid.


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