Two asteroids flying by Earth pose no risk

Asteroid 2000 QW7

Enlarge Image Asteroid 2000 QW7

And while that distance is astonishingly close on an astronomical scale, it does not suggest that the asteroid is going to hit Earth - although it has a small chance to strike our planet in the future. Space rock 2000 QW7 was first found by NASA cosmologists on August 8, 2000.

But on the morning of June 22, telescopes were able to detect a small asteroid before it entered Earth's atmosphere.

It will fly by around five million kilometres from Earth at 23,000/km/h, according to NASA's jet propulsion laboratory.

The additional images from the Pan-STARRS telescope helped researchers better determine the entry path for the asteroid, which bumped the Scout rating to 4.

ATLAS, which is two telescopes 100 miles apart on the Big Island and Maui, scans the entire sky every two nights for asteroids that could impact Earth.

"If an object this size were to impact Earth, it would leave more than a scratch - it could wipe out a city and cause regional devastation!"

The asteroid dwarfs famous landmarks, such as the 121m Spire, the 324m Eiffel Tower, and the 443m Empire State Building. This asteroid is estimated to be be 120 to 260 metres in size.

Asteroid 2006 QQ23 in a File Photo.

"These space rocks have been all around watched - one since 2000 and the other since 2010-and their circles are very outstanding", Lindley Johnson, planetary guard official and program official for the Planetary Defense Coordination Office at NASA, said in an announcement.

According to NASA, Near-Earth objects (NEOs) are asteroids and comets that orbit the Sun, but their orbits bring them into Earth's neighbourhood - within 30 million miles of Earth's orbit.

October's asteroid falls somewhere in between with a speed of 40,320 kilometers per hour but it will be twice as far away at a distance of 6.2 million kilometers. It's "more or less benign", he said.

Two asteroids NASA have been tracking for years are expected to fly past earth on Saturday.

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