Asteroid bigger than Empire State on close approach to Earth – how to see it

A mega asteroid which is the size of 19 football fields is set to fly past Earth during a "close approach" this week.

The super rock, named 7335 (1989 JA), is the biggest asteroid of the year and is just three days away from making its close encounter, according to NASA's Center for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS),

Astroid 7335 was discovered by Eleanor Helin in May 1989 and measures a whopping colossal 1.1 miles in diameter, which means it tops the Empire State Building in size.

According to the CNEOS database, the huge rock will safely pass our planet at a distance of about 2.5 million miles, or around 10 times the distance between Earth and the Moon.

The asteroid's next close approach to Earth won't happen until 2055.

Due to the asteroid's enormous size, NASA has classified it as "potentially hazardous (PH)", reports Daily Record.

That's because any change in its direction could be a disaster for Earth and cause severe impact.

Any fast-moving space object that comes within 4.65 million miles is considered to be "potentially hazardous" by NASA.

Boffins have said that it is inevitable that an asteroid will one day enter our atmosphere at some point.

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The largest rock to ever pass by Earth is 3122 Florence (1981 ET3) – an asteroid so large it has two moons. It flew by the Earth seven million kilometres away back in September 2017.

It comes after the first picture of the supermassive black hole at the centre of our Milky Way galaxy was taken by astronomers this month.

Nasa has confirmed that 7335 should pass Earth at around 14:26 UTC, which is 10.26 ET on May 27.

To keep up to date with the rare event, you can tune into the Virtual Telescope Project's live stream, which will lunch on Thursday evening.

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