At approximately 11:30 am Eastern Time on Halloween, an enormous asteroid the size of the Empire State Building will streak past Earth. Some people are expecting the asteroid to strike, but NASA says that the asteroid they only learned about just over a week ago will not make impact with Earth. In addition to this large asteroid, there’s also talk of a smaller one traveling at a similar speed and distance as well.
The first asteroid is 2009 FD, a dark asteroid, which will make its closest approach on October 29. The second and larger one, which has many people worried, is 2015 TB145. It is due to fly-by on Halloween. The two asteroids won’t be visible to the naked eye, even at their closest approach. The astronomical events have been announced in NASA’s Goldstone Radar Observation Plan.
The passing of 2015 TB145 will be the closest approach by an object this large until asteroid August 2027, when 1999 AN10 will pass within one lunar distance (380,000 km). NASA has given these objects a value of 1 on the Torino Scale, which is the value assigned to non-dangerous asteroids. So, don’t worry!
Just so you rest easier, know that NASA doesn’t close shop for Halloween. Both objects will be tracked and studied by the Goldstone Observatory in California.
Despite NASA’s reassurance that Earth will not be affected by these traveling asteroids, there are already conspiracy theories about the space program’s refusal to tell the public the truth.
What can we say? Just to be safe, you may want to eat your candy before Halloween!