Asteroid up to three times the size of Statue of Liberty nearing Earth’s orbit

An asteroid up to three times the size of the Statue of Liberty is set to enter Earth’s orbit next month.

The space rock, dubbed 2021 NY1, is among 17 of the incoming near-Earth objects being tracked by NASA approaching within 60 days.

It has a diameter of 130-300m, while the Statue of Liberty stands at just 93m.

2021 NY1 is travelling at a speed of 20,915mph, but is expected to pass Earth at a safe distance of 930,487 miles.

For comparison, the moon is 238,855 miles away from us.

It is expected to enter the Earth’s orbit on September 22.

Another of the asteroids being monitored by NASA, named 2021 QC1, has a smaller diameter of 71-160m.

However, it is travelling at a slightly quicker speed of 28,655mph.

It is expected to pass Earth at a distance of more than three million miles on September 1.

Earlier this month, NASA said a new study had increased the probability that asteroid Bennu will smash into Earth between now and the year 2300.

The C-type space rock, which is listed as a "potentially hazardous object" to human life, was discovered in 1999.

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Bennu is one of the two most hazardous known asteroids in the solar system.

Although the chances have increased, scientists have said the probability is still between 1 in 2,700 [about 0.037%].

The study used data from theOSIRIS-REx spacecraft to better calculate Bennu's movements, according to aNASA news release.

Researchers were able to rule out some impact scenarios but raised the overall probability for impact on September 24, 2182.

OSIRIS-REx spent around two years orbiting Bennu – collecting information about its size, shape, spin, and orbital trajectory.

The menacing asteroid is about one-third of a mile wide.

On May 10, 2021, the spacecraft started its journey back to Earth and is expected to deliver rock and dust samples on September 24, 2023.

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