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An Asteroid the Size of a City Block Will Fly Close to Earth Today

Emily Price
Here's How NASA Plans to Protect Earth From Giant Asteroids Hurtling Through Space

Earth is going to come in close contact with an asteroid Tuesday the size of a city block. The asteroid is set to fly by at 6:05 p.m. ET, and will be within 126,419 miles of Earth, roughly half the distance from the Earth to the moon, Weather.com reports.

While we don’t typically see astroids fly that close to the Earth’s surface, it’s not an uncommon occurrence. NASA says that an asteroid this size come this close to Earth roughly every decade. Still, it’s a great opportunity for scientists to observe the astroid’s flight, as well as a great chance for regular people to catch a glimpse—thanks to its size and proximity to Earth, it should be visible with just a small telescope.

This is the closest this particular asteroid, known as 2010 WC9, has gotten to Earth in 300 years.

While the asteroid will be fairly close to Earth, the 200-400-foot rock won’t be close enough to be seen by the naked eye. If you don’t have a telescope and want to snag a look, the Norholt Branch Observatories in London will be live-streaming a telescopic view of the astroid’s approach on its Facebook page around 7 p.m. ET.