Potentially Hazardous Asteroid is Heading Closer to Earth: Footage Revealed

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Asteroid 52768 (1998 OR2). Photo via Dr. Gianluca Masi of Virtual Telescope Project.

An asteroid that can be easily observed with simple equipment is making a close approach to Earth on April 29, NASA announced. On March 24 Dr. Gianluca Masi of Italy’s Virtual Telescope Project has captured the celestial object on its way to our planet.

The footage, captured by the scientist’s Planewave 17′′ telescope is a 300-second exposure. It shows the objects dubbed “Asteroid 52768 (1998 OR2)” in all its shining glory. The telescope managed to get that image from the 15.5 million mile distance.

The asteroid’s presumed size is 1.2-2.4 miles in diameter, which makes NASA classify it as potentially hazardous. The above-mentioned “close approach” means that despite passing Earth from within the 4.6 million mile distance 1998 OR2’s orbital path can potentially evolve into an Earth-crossing orbit and hit the planet.

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