An asteroid with an estimated size of between 4 and 8 meters is going to pass by the Earth tonight (Thursday) and it will be the closest asteroid ever recorded to pass by the planet. The asteroid is called 2023 BU, and will pass over the southern tip of South America at 2:27 (Israel time) and at a distance of about 3,540 km above the Earth’s surface. This distance is also the range in which satellites are located.
NASA said that despite its proximity, the asteroid is not going to hit the Earth. Even if its trajectory was aimed at the Earth, it would turn into a fireball as soon as it entered the atmosphere and disintegrate on the way.
“Asteroid 2023 BU was quickly ruled out as a potential impact on us, but even so it will come unusually close to Earth,” said a senior US space engineer. “In fact, this is one of the closest approaches of an object to Earth ever recorded.”