Apophis Asteroid Not the Asteroid That Just Flew by Earth


Apophis Asteroid, which is not supposed to impact the Earth in 2036, is being misidentified as 2013 TV135, a newly discovered asteroid that came within 4.2 million miles of Earth in September.

That newly discovered asteroid was discovered by astronomers working in Ukraine, and could be “in the Earth’s neighborhood’ in 2032, according to NASA. But  the current probability of the asteroid not impacting Earth is “about 99.998 percent,” said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA’s Near-Earth Object Program Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.

The Apophis Asteroid, meanwhile, is a different asteroid, which flew by the Earth–at quite a distance–on Jan. 9, 2013.

This asteroid is projected to fly back by the Earth in 2029, and possibly fly by it once again in 2036. Some feared the possibility of an impact with Earth at that time, but scientists have ruled it out. 

“We have effectively ruled out the possibility of an Earth impact by Apophis in 2036,” said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA’s Near-Earth Object Program Office at JPL.

The flyby projected for April 13, 2029 is when Apophis is expected to become the closest flyby of an asteroid of its size when it comes no closer than 19, 400 miles (31,300 kilometers) above Earth’s surface.

Category: Science Space


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