What do we know about the asteroid that will touch the Earth on November 2

What do we know about the asteroid that will touch the Earth on November 2

The day before the US presidential elections an asteroid will pass very close to our planet, but there's no need to be afraid. Here's everything we know

(Image: Getty Images) Codenamed 2018VP1, also known as Election Day. But politics has nothing to do with it. It is an asteroid that on November 2 - the eve of the US presidential elections, hence the nickname - will pass very close to our planet. Do not worry, however: the probability of an impact with the Earth is extremely low, more or less equal to 0.41%; even if it hit us, the asteroid would disintegrate in contact with our atmosphere, and therefore could not cause any damage.

2018VP1 was discovered in 2018, when it was almost half a million kilometers away from our planet. It has an orbital period of 2 Earth years, and therefore its return in 2020 is anything but unexpected. It is part of the Apollo-class asteroids, the Near Earth Asteroids (Nea) whose orbit has a semi-major axis greater than an astronomical unit (about 150 million kilometers) and a perihelion (the point of minimum distance from the Sun) less than 1.017 astronomical units.

Asteroid 2018VP1 is very small, approx. 6.5 feet, and poses no threat to Earth! It currently has a 0.41% chance of entering our planet's atmosphere, but if it did, it would disintegrate due to its extremely small size.

- NASA Asteroid Watch (@AsteroidWatch) August 23, 2020

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