2001 FO32 is a small asteroid whose orbit crosses Earth’s orbit. NASA classified 2001 FO32 as a “Potentially Hazardous Asteroid” due to its close passage through our planet. However, this rock has another feature that makes it interesting. This space traveler will pass our neighborhood at a speed of 123,887 km / h.

It is a considerable size, about 1 kilometer in diameter, and is on its way to our planet.

Illustration of the asteroid that will pass the Earth

Fastest asteroid we know

It is the largest known rock to pass in 2021 and will cross with us on March 21st. Asteroid 2001 FO32 is about 1 km in diameter and, unless its orbit is disturbed, it will not pose a risk of impact. However, this space rock is also of interest because it is one of the fastest space rocks known to fly across Earth.

As monitored, the 2001 FO32 it travels at 123,887km / h or 34.4 km per second, relative to Earth. In contrast, the Earth revolves around the Sun at about 30 km per second. Since 2001, the year FO32 was discovered, it has been known to be of good size and occasionally pass close to Earth. Thus, it was classified as a potentially dangerous asteroid.

From the various calculations made, it is known that the passages through our planet do not pose any danger.

Image of the orbit of the fastest asteroid that will pass Earth this year

NASA classifies it as potentially dangerous

According to the routes simulated by NASA, on March 21, 2021, the closest distance from FO32 to Earth will occur in the middle of the afternoon, at 4:03 pm. Thus, it will pass about 5 lunar distances, or about 2,016,351 km. The set of its characteristics makes it an interesting reason for analysis, given that it is the fastest and, due to its size, it is larger than 97% of the asteroids that we know.

A fascinating aspect of asteroids leads observers using backyard telescopes to identify them as apparently slow "stars". It usually takes at least 5 to 10 minutes for users of the backyard telescope to detect the movement of a space rock in front of their star field. However, the asteroid 2001 FO32 will be passing through Earth at such a fast rate that, when closer, observers using telescopes of 8 inches or larger will be able to detect their movement in front of the stars, in real time.

After passing through Earth in March of this year, the next encounter of this asteroid with our planet will occur in 31 years, on March 22, 2052. However, the 2021 approach will be the closest to Earth for the next 200 years to whose orbit has been calculated.

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