NASA’s asteroid trackers have recently revealed that a supermassive space rock with the destructive power of 2,700 megatons of explosive TNT will come dangerously close to Earth later this year. Asteroid identified as FT3 is a monstrous rocky object measuring an estimated 1,115ft (340m) in diameter. It is to be noted that asteroids (space rocks) are small, rocky objects that orbit the Sun. The space rocks approach towards the Earth due to the gravitational forces that affect them. Asteroids can bring tsunamis, shock waves and flattening winds that could be catastrophic. A large number of asteroids are hovering all around the Earth and we might get hit too sooner or later. In August this year, asteroids identified as 2019 ON, 2006 QQ23, 454094 2013 BZ45, 2018 PN22, 2016 PD, 2002 JR100 and 2019 OU1 would have hit our planet. Lucky we are, as they all failed to hit our planet and we are safe.
Coming back to Asteroid FT3, the supermassive space rock will come barrelling past our home planet on October 3, 2019, reported express.co.uk. In a statement, NASA said that this will be asteroid FT3’s first of 165 approaches between 2019 and 2116.
“On any one of these asteroid flybys, the risk of cataclysm is low but should the asteroid veer off course and straight into Earth, the results could be cataclysmic,” NASA said. According to the NASA, asteroid FT3 weighs an incredible 55,000,000,000kg.
According to a report in express.co.uk, if the asteroid were to ever hit the Earth, the rock would slam into the planet at 20.37km per second or more than 45,500mph. The force of impact would likely be equal to 2,700 megatons of TNT or 2.7 million tonnes of TNT.
Asteroid FT3 is a so-called Apollo-type space rock, meaning it follows an orbit similar to asteroid 1862 Apollo. NASA had first spotted the gigantic rock on March 20, 2007 and has since confirmed FT3’s orbit based on a total of 14 observations.
“Eventually, the impact probability will drop – usually quite abruptly – to zero or, if the asteroid is really on a collision trajectory, it will continue to grow until it reaches 100 percent,” NASA concluded.