A large asteroid could be headed toward us in the near future — barreling through space on a risk trajectory that might cause it to collide with Earth.
The news comes from the Express, which cites NASA sources, who revealed that the space rock could end up engaged in not one, but 62 different potential impact trajectories with our planet — each of them waiting to sling the asteroid toward Earth over the next 100 years.
Known as asteroid 2018 LF16, the space rock was last observed by our astronomers on June 16 — notes NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) — who calculated its orbit and its potential to become a threat to our planet. The calculations showed asteroid 2018 LF16 could collide with our planet on 62 different dates between now and 2117.
The first of these unnerving opportunities will arise just five years from now — occurring on August 8, 2023. Other potential impact dates in the near future fall on August 3, 2024, and on August 1, 2025. To make matters worse, the space rock is estimated to measure nearly 700 feet across and is currently hurtling through space at a speed of more than 33,844 miles per hour. This makes asteroid 2018 LF16 twice as large as the Statue-of-Liberty-sized space rock that skimmed past our planet earlier today, as reported by the Inquisitr.
"A space rock this big is about twice as tall as Big Ben's clock tower in London, twice the height of the Statue of Liberty in New York, and is four times as tall as Nelson's Column in Trafalgar Square," states the Express.