Australian citizens were amazed to see a glowing green object across the Australian night sky last Sunday, June 14, with some being able to film and post it on social media.
But what was it?
According to the Daily Mail, a woman from West Australia named Shaz Hussien was able to capture the glowing orb in the sky and posted the video on social media.
She can be heard asking what it was, astonished by sight, while a man’s voice answered in the background and saying it was an asteroid–and he might be right, as experts believe the object caught on camera was Asteroid 2002 NN4, which passed the Earth on Sunday, according to Nine News.
It could be seen across Victoria and South Australia, creating a spectacular show for people here on Earth.
According to the news outlet, astronomers believe that Asteroid 2002 NN4 was around 570 meters wide, which is roughly equivalent to the size of six football fields, and was passing us from 5.2 million kilometers away from our planet, around 13 times further away than our nearest companion, the Moon.
With its distance, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) believes it poses no threat to our planet.
According to the space agency, these occurrences are normal, and they are tracking down any near-earth objects (NEOs) that have passed or are passing by us.
Many of these asteroids are huge, with some as big as some of the tallest buildings in the world and pass by us dangerously close, at least in the sense of distances in space, which means. However, they are still millions of kilometers away from us, they could pose a threat sometime in the future as our planet’s gravity could pull them closer and cause a collision.
Nevertheless, NASA and other experts in the field assure we have nothing to worry about any of these passing visitors for now.
They believe such a collision will happen around 200 to 300 years from now.
Read Also: Can We Finally Build a Time Machine? Physicists Use Quantum Computer to ‘Reverse Time’
However, in the event the threat is greater, the agency has a plan: slam the incoming asteroid with a spacecraft designed solely for the mission to protect Earth from these “potentially dangerous” space rocks.
The space mission is known as the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART).
The spacecraft will slam the asteroid to reroute it and avoid any collision that might occur that could be catastrophic if it’s one of the larger asteroids passing by us.
As of now, the biggest asteroid that NASA is tracking and is orbiting the sun is 33 kilometers long.
Several people have also captured the amazing showcase of Asteroid 2002 NN4, including Mason Vearing, who was also at awe with the stunning, albeit short, light show in the sky.
Although many others were not able to take a souvenir photo or video of the distant asteroid, they took to social media to amazement the event that happened around midnight in Australian time.
Read Also: Russian Cosmonauts Aboard the ISS Battle a Grandmaster Here on Earth for a Round of Chess