An asteroid just missed Earth this morning! Asteroid QW3 whizzed past Earth during the early hours today. Here’s what we know.
A 92 feet wide asteroid named Asteroid 2020 QW3 just missed Earth on August 22 at 06:41am, according to NASA. Although it was not on a collision course with Earth, it passed close enough to Earth forcing NASA to keep a close eye on it. Asteroid 2020 QW3 is different from previous asteroids that have flown past Earth recently as it does not belong to the Apollo group of asteroids but the Amor group. The asteroid orbits around the Sun, taking almost 732 days to complete 1 orbit.
The Asteroid 2020 QW3 flew past Earth today, on August 22 at 06:41 am at a distance of 3.3 million kilometers at a staggering speed of 64,800 kilometers per hour.
According to Sky.org, Asteroid 2020 QW3 is at a maximum distance of 321 million kilometers from the Sun. On the other hand, its distance from the Earth is just 8.96 million kilometers, equivalent to 0.06 astronomical units. An astronomical unit (AU, or au) is basically a unit of length equal to the average, or mean, distance between Earth and the Sun, that is, 149,597,870.7 km (92,955,807.3 miles).
Did an asteroid kill dinosaurs?
Dinosaurs are one of the most popular creatures among science fiction movie genre fans because of their sheer large size as well as fearsome demeanour. They were humongous creatures which roamed the Earth till around 65 million years ago.
These fascinating species, along with almost two-thirds of creatures on Earth, went extinct. According to the Alvarez hypothesis, the extinction was caused by a massive asteroid which crashed on Earth more than 65 million years ago. The asteroid terraformed the planet which has made it habitable for humans today but likely was the reason which started the extinction of dinosaurs.