House-size asteroid passes close by Earth

March 18th, 2011 - 12:10 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Mar 18 (ANI): An asteroid the size of a house passed close by Earth Wednesday, flying within the orbit of the moon just one day after astronomers spotted the space rock in the sky, according to NASA.

The small asteroid 2011 EB74 was about 47 feet across and posed no threat of hitting Earth, since it was too small to survive the trip through the planet’s atmosphere, reports Fox News.

Instead, the asteroid passed the planet at a comfortable distance of about 203,000 miles when it made its closest approach at 5:49 p.m. EDT, said NASA officials.

The astronomers discovered asteroid 2011 EB74 Tuesday as part of the ongoing Catalina Sky Survey, a project based at the University of Arizona to seek out previously unknown near-Earth objects like asteroids and comets.

“At 14 meters in size, 2011 EB74 is NOT considered a potentially hazardous asteroid. Rocks this size would burn up in our atmosphere,” Asteroid Watch officials wrote in a Twitter update.

The asteroid flyby is the latest space rock to fly near Earth this year. (ANI)

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