As we are all grappling with the effects of the pandemic on our daily lives, there was another could-be cataclysmic event just passed by Earth, while most of us are still in our pajamas.
An estimated 1.2 miles wide asteroid flew by Earth early Wednesday morning, said CNN citing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
The asteroid is called 52768 (1998 OR2), and it was first spotted in 1998, said NASA.
On April 29, it passed within 3,908,791 miles of Earth, moving at 19,461 miles per hour.
It is said to be 16 times farther than the distance between Earth and the moon.
The flyby occur at 5:56 a.m. ET, according to NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies.
The center tracks Near-Earth Objects, or NEOs, that could collide with Earth. They have been tracking this particular asteroid for 20 years.
If it did impact Earth, the asteroid is “large enough to cause global effects,” according to NASA, back when the asteroid was first discovered.
During the pandemic, scientists at Arecibo are continuing to make their observations on behalf of planetary defense.
In line with social distancing, they have limited the number of scientists and radar operators at the facility, and they’re wearing masks during observations, said CNN report.