Truth Frequency Radio
Sep 04, 2014

  • 2014 RC will be above New Zealand at 20.18 BST during closest approach
  • Amateur astronomers with telescopes might be able to see it graze past
  • Asteroid 2014 RC, which is 60ft (20 metres), is not expected to hit Earth
  • But its orbit will bring it back to our planet’s neighbourhood in the future
  • News comes just days after Brian Cox told MailOnline that the world is ill-equipped to deal with asteroid threats

By Ellie Zolfagharifard for MailOnline

An asteroid the size of a whale will have a ‘very close’ shave with Earth on Sunday, Nasa has reported

At the time of closest approach, asteroid 2014 RC will be one-tenth the distance from the centre of Earth to the moon, or about 25,000 miles (40,000km).

The news comes just days after Brian Cox told MailOnline that the world is ill-equipped to deal with asteroid threats, which could someday wipe out humanity.

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From its reflected brightness, astronomers estimate that the asteroid is about 60ft (20 metres) in size. At its closest point to Earth will be above New Zealand on 7 September at about 20.18 BST.

Amateur astronomers with small telescopes might glimpse the fast-moving appearance of this near-Earth asteroid, Nasa says.

Astronomers say the asteroid will pass below Earth and the ring of communications and weather satellites orbiting about 22,000 miles (36,000km) above our planet’s surface.

It was initially discovered on the night of August 31 by the Catalina Sky Survey near Tucson, Arizona, and independently detected the next night by the Pan-Starrs 1 telescope in Hawaii.

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‘While this celestial object does not appear to pose any threat to Earth or satellites, its close approach creates a unique opportunity for researchers to observe and learn more about asteroids,’ it added.

Asteroid 2014 RC will not hit Earth, but its orbit will bring it back to our planet’s neighbourhood in the future.

The asteroid’s future motion will be closely monitored, but no future threatening Earth encounters have been identified, according to Nasa.

However, earlier week, Brian Cox warned MailOnline that ‘there is an asteroid with our name on it and it will hit us.’

And no one really knows when a serious impact could happen.

‘It could be tomorrow,’ Professor Cox told MailOnline. ‘The thing that bothers me about that is we do know how to do something about it.’

He referred to the bus-sized asteroid, named 2014 EC, came within 38,300 (61,637km) miles of Earth in March – around a sixth of the distance between the moon and our planet.

And it wasn’t the only one threatening Earth. Nasa is currently tracking 1,400 ‘potentially hazardous asteroids’ and predicting their future approaches and impact probabilities.

The threat is so serious that former astronaut Ed Lu has described it as ‘cosmic roulette’ and said that only ‘blind luck’ has so far saved humanity from a serious impact.

COULD HUMAN LIFE BE WIPED OUT ON MARCH 16, 2880?

The date of Earth’s potential destruction has been set at 16 March 2880, when an asteroid hurtling through space has a possibility of striking our planet.

Researchers studying the rock found that its body rotates so quickly that it should break apart, but somehow remains intact on its Earth-bound trajectory.

They believe it is held together by cohesive forces known as van der Waals – and although this is considered a major breakthrough, scientists still don’t know how to stop it.

The discovery was made by researchers at the University of Tennessee (UT), Knoxville. Previous research has shown that asteroids are loose piles of rubble held together by gravity and friction.

The asteroid is travelling at about 9 miles (15km) a second relative to the Earth. It is due to swing so close to Earth it could slam into the Atlantic Ocean at 38,000 miles per hour.

It is estimated that if 1950 DA were to collide with the planet, it would do so with a force of around 44,800 megatonnes of TNT. Although the probability of an impact is only 0.3 per cent, this represents a risk 50 per cent greater than an impact from all other asteroids.

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