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A newly-discovered asteroid is incoming fast, and astronomers calculate that it will skim by Earth by only about 40,000 miles. That's closer to Earth than the moon., and closer than some satellites stationed in a High Earth Orbit.
The new asteroid, 2009 DD45, was spotted by prolific comet-hunter Rob McNaught about two days ago at Australia"s Siding Spring Observatory. DD45 is estimated to have a diameter of about 115 feet, or roughly the size of the asteroid (120 feet) that slammed into Tunguska in Siberia in 1908.
That disastrous impact slammed the energy of about 150 Hiroshima-sized bombs into the Siberian countryside. NASA's Near-Earth Object office has details:
DD45 is expected to speed past Earth somwehere over the Pacific Ocean near Tahiti at about 6 a.m. PST March 2. Racing at about half a degree per minute, the asteroid will be in the constellation of Virgo, with a magnitude of slightly more than 10.
NASA has provided a plot of DD45's path here.