Watch a mile-long asteroid sling past the Earth tonight at 7 PM ET

The asteroid is over a mile in diameter but has no chance of hitting Earth.
Marc DeAngelis
M. DeAngelis|04.28.20

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1998 OR2
Arecibo Observatory/NASA/NSF

An asteroid will hit Earth -- it’s not a matter of “if” but “when.” Fortunately, the space rock known as 1998 OR2 won’t be crashing your quarantine party, but it’s still considered a potentially hazardous object since it will come within four million miles of Earth. Armchair astronomers can watch a livestream of the asteroid’s approach tonight at 7 PM ET. Hosted by Slooh, a web-based telescope service, astronomy experts will be available on Zoom to answer questions from members, while viewers can watch the flyby on YouTube for free.

1998 OR2 will come closest to the Earth tomorrow at 5:56 AM ET, and will be only 3.9 million miles away from the planet. To put that into perspective, that’s about 16 times as far away as the Moon. That may sound like a vast distance, but on a cosmic scale, it’s a pretty close call. Tuning into the livestream could be a fun way to stare death in the face, even if death is millions of miles away.

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