HomeNewsAsteroid Headed Towards Earth and Could Hit Day Before 2020 Election, NASA Says

Asteroid Headed Towards Earth and Could Hit Day Before 2020 Election, NASA Says

by Jacklyn Krol
nasa says asteroid could hit earth day before presidential election
Chris Henrey, Unsplash

NASA says that an asteroid could hit earth the day before the 2020 presidential election.

What NASA Said About the Asteroid

NASA made the big announcement on Sunday (August 23). Although the actually asteroid has a slim chance of entering the Earth’s atmosphere on November 2, it has a likelihood of 0.41% of happening. If it does enter our atmosphere, it would disintegrate (burn) before hitting the ground.

The asteroid is named 2018VP1 and has been around for over fifty years. It had a few close encounters with Earth, most recently in November 2018.

According to NASA’s press release, 2018VP1 is SUV-sized coming in at 10 to 20 feet. It broke the record for coming closer to earth than any other known NEA ( Near-Earth Asteroid Scout). It passed at “1,830 miles (2,950 kilometers) above the southern Indian Ocean on Sunday, Aug. 16 at 12:08 a.m. EDT.”

Although it is considered on an impact trajectory, it will most likely become a fireball once it reaches our atmosphere. Surprisingly, asteroids coming near Earth happens multiple times annually.

“It’s quite an accomplishment to find these tiny close-in asteroids in the first place, because they pass by so fast,” Paul Chodas, the director of the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California told Business Insider.

“There’s typically only a short window of a couple of days before or after close approach when this small of an asteroid is close enough to Earth to be bright enough but not so close that it moves too fast in the sky to be detected by a telescope,” he said.

NASA’s Twitter + See the Asteroid

Asteroid 2018VP1 is very small, approx. 6.5 feet, and poses no threat to Earth! It currently has a 0.41% chance of entering our planet’s atmosphere, but if it did, it would disintegrate due to its extremely small size.

#asteroid 2020 QG, discovered by @ztfsurvey and roughly 10 to 20 feet (3 to 6 meters) across, is very small by asteroid standards and would likely break up in Earth’s atmosphere if it were to impact our planet.

See the tweets and photo, below.