Yes, an Asteroid the Size of a House Passed Earth This Week

The asteroid scooted safely by at a relatively close distance.

  • Published
asteroid size of house passed earth
Image via Ren Junchuan/Xinhua via Getty Images

Scenarios involving world-destroying asteroids hurtling toward Earth are without a doubt part of popular culture. Such asteroids have been the subject of blockbuster movies like the Bruce Willis movie “Armageddon,” and indirectly, “Jurassic Park.”

On March 28, 2022, an asteroid approximately the size of a house passed Earth safely, which is hardly an event worthy of headlines — except in this case the space rock was closer to us than the moon.

The asteroid, named poetically, 2022 FB2, passed Earth at a distance of about 93,400 miles. That’s closer than the average distance between the Earth and moon, which is roughly 239,000 miles, per Space.com.

Another asteroid, smaller in size than FB2, actually hit Earth’s atmosphere, burning up over the Norwegian Sea on March 11, 2022, per NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).

The smaller asteroid, called EB5, “was too small to pose a hazard to Earth, but its discovery marks the fifth time that any asteroid has been observed before impacting into the atmosphere,” according to JPL.

Another house-sized asteroid will be whizzing past Earth on April 2, 2022, but this time farther away. Asteroid 2021 GN1 will be more than 3.4 million miles from Earth at its closest.

Sources:

“Asteroid the Size of a House Flies by Earth.” WFTS, 28 Mar. 2022, https://www.abcactionnews.com/news/national/asteroid-the-size-of-a-house-flies-by-earth.

JPL. “NASA System Predicts Impact of Small Asteroid.” NASA, 15 March 2022, https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/nasa-system-predicts-impact-of-small-asteroid. Accessed 1 Apr. 2022.

Malik, Tariq. “House-Sized Asteroid Zooms by Earth in Close Flyby.” Space.com, 28 Mar. 2022, https://www.space.com/house-sized-asteroid-2022-fb2-earth-flyby.