Guwahati: An asteroid is set to come closer to Earth — closer than even the Moon. Officially recognized as Asteroid 11 ES4, the space rock will be a mere 121,000 kilometers (kms) from Earth as it shoots past the planet next week. The moon, on the other hand, is three times further away at 384,400 kms.
As per media reports, the asteroid does not pose a threat to Earth. Even if it did, the space rock is only between 22 metres to 49 meters in diameter — approximately the size of a plane. If it were to break through Earth’s atmosphere, it would likely burn up on the way down.
It is to be noted that Asteroid 11 ES4’s closest approach to Earth was on 13 March 2011, which is when it was first spotted by astronomers and catalogued.