A few weeks ago, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory noticed an unidentified asteroid headed toward Earth.
CBS News reports that the asteroid called 2015 TB145 is approximately between 290 meters and 650 meters in diameter. It is expected to pass within 300,000 miles of Earth on October 31st.
A representative of the NASA laboratory’s Near Earth Object program said that similar objects pass close to the Earth usually once per decade.
The last time an asteroid came close to Earth was in January of this year. 2004 BL86 passed Earth from about 750,000 miles away, almost double in distance from 2015 TB145. Another near-passing asteroid was not expected for another decade or so, when an asteroid called 1999 AN10 flies by in 2027.
At the time, 1999 AN10 was the next previously cataloged near-Earth asteroid, until the discovery of 2015 TB145 on October 10th.
Scientists say the discovery is not really that big of surprise, as they find new objects every day. The list of potential near-Earth objects is not finalized and gets updated whenever necessary.
Surveys of space, funded by NASA have identified approximately 90 percent of near-Earth asteroids 1 Kilometer across or more. They say they still need to find many of the ones smaller than 1 Kilometer across.