Asteroid larger than Burj Khalifa will skirt Earth on Saturday

  • Asteroid larger than Burj Khalifa will skirt Earth on Saturday

Asteroid larger than Burj Khalifa will skirt Earth on Saturday

A 990 metre-wide asteroid headed towards Earth will not hit the planet, but merely intersect its path this Saturday.

A "potentially hazardous" asteroid that is larger than the tallest structure on earth and powerful enough to cause mass extinction is reportedly speeding toward Earth at an estimated 34,000 miles per hour.

Though asteroid 2020 BX12 is considered a "potentially hazardous" near-Earth object (NEO) because of its size and minimum orbit intersection distance of 188,000 miles from Earth, it "poses no danger at this time and is now receding from Earth", Arecibo added.

"Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs) are now defined based on parameters that measure the asteroid's potential to make threatening close approaches to the Earth", NASA said in a statement. Since it traces an Earth-crossing orbit, the chances of a collision remain high every time it moves this way.

The asteroid, which is said to have a diameter of about 3,250 feet, could "trigger a nuclear winter" if it collided with Earth, the news outlet reported.

To put it into perspective, the asteroid that might have led to the extinction of the dinosaurs 66 million years ago from the face of Earth was 10 km in diameter.

The next time an asteroid will pass as closely to Earth is 2029, when the Apophis asteroid, measuring 300-metres wide, will cruise by.

United States space agency NASA has spotted a massive, hazardous space rock that might approach the Earth very soon, possibly on February 15.