Halloween Asteroid "Spooky" has snuck up on Earth and 'narrowly' misses us
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Halloween night may have just become a bit spookier. On October 10th, NASA discovered an asteroid that snuck up on planet Earth. Due to its odd orbit it remained undetected until the Pan-STARRS telescope in Hawaii spotted it.
Asteroid 2015 TB145, nicknamed “Spooky”, is predicted to pass our planet on Halloween night but thankfully it isn’t heading in our direction. It will be whizzing past us at 22 miles per second which is much higher than the average asteroid that is around 6 miles per second.
It will be nearly 302,885 miles away when it passes us which, when you know the moon is 238,900 miles from Earth, won’t be anything too serious to worry about. It has the diameter between 900-2,000 feet which, again doesn’t seem that bad when you realize an asteroid needs to be 3,200 feet wide to be “extinction level”.
We can take comfort from the head of NASA’s Near Earth Object Program Paul Chodas when he told Popular Science that, “If it were headed directly for Earth, that would have been too late to do anything about it. An Asteroid of this size is really difficult to deflect with only 20 days warning.” Thankfully, it is not headed towards us.
It will be at its closest to Earth at 1:18 E.D.T and can be viewed either by tuning into the online community observatory Slooh, or by pulling out your personal star chart and telescope. Look up at the Orion constellation and you will see it passing through Orion's Shield.