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Last Updated Monday May 21 2018 10:38 AM IST

Small asteroid to closely pass by Earth on Friday

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Small asteroid to closely pass by Earth on Friday Asteroid 2018 CC was estimated to be between 15 and 30 meters in size. Representative image

Washington: An asteroid, estimated to be between 15 and 30 meters in size, will safely pass by Earth on Friday, NASA has said.

The celestial object, designated asteroid 2018 CB, will pass closely by Earth around 4am IST on Saturday (5.30 pm EST), at a distance of about 64,000 kilometers, which is less than one-fifth the distance of Earth to the Moon.

"Although 2018 CB is quite small, it might well be larger than the asteroid that entered the atmosphere over Chelyabinsk, Russia, almost exactly five years ago, in 2013," said Paul Chodas of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

"Asteroids of this size do not often approach this close to our planet -- maybe only once or twice a year," Chodas said.

What is interesting to note is that the asteroid was discovered by astronomers at the NASA-funded Catalina Sky Survey (CSS) in Arizona very recently -- on February 4.

Another asteroid discovered by CSS on the same day passed by Earth on Tuesday.

Asteroid 2018 CC was estimated to be between 15 and 30 meters in size.

Its close approach to Earth came at 3.10 p.m. EST at a distance of about 184,000 kilometers, NASA said.

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The opinions expressed here do not reflect those of Malayala Manorama. Legal action under the IT Act will be taken against those making derogatory and obscene statements.

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