1,000-feet wide `beast` asteroid to zoom past by Earth today
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Last Updated: Sunday, June 08, 2014, 14:39
California: It is time to thank your stars. A 1,000-feet wide "beast" at a speed of 50,400 km per hour - that could wipe out an entire city - will zoom past by Earth within a range of a million miles today.

The asteroid will, however, safely pass Earth from a distance of 1.25 million kms - more than three times farther away than our moon.

Nicknamed the "Beast," the mighty rock may have caused an explosion measured in megatons and wipe out a city if it were to hit Earth, NASA scientists said.

Designated "2014 HQ124", the asteroid was discovered April 23, 2014, by NASA's NEOWISE mission, a space telescope adapted for scouting the skies for asteroids and comets.

"2014 HQ124" is designated a "potentially hazardous asteroid" (PHA) by NASA.

There are currently 1,484 known PHAs but none pose a significant near-term risk of impacting Earth.

"There is zero chance of an impact," said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's near-Earth object program office at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.


First Published: Sunday, June 08, 2014, 14:20

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