In early August 2021, fast-moving asteroid 2016 AJ193 is rushing inward toward the sun in its 5.91-year orbit. Earth happens to be in the approximate path of the asteroid. But it will not strike us. At its closest on August 21, the asteroid will pass some 8.9 lunar distances away. This beautiful orbit simulation is via SpaceReference.org.
Close asteroid pass August 21
A good-sized asteroid will pass by Earth on Saturday, August 21, 2021. There is no danger it will strike our planet. It’s been designated as asteroid 2016 AJ193. It’s estimated to be just under a mile wide (1.4 km wide). And it’s moving fast. It’s traveling at 58,538 miles per hour (94,208 km/h) relative to Earth. That’s about about 16 miles per second (26.17 km per second). Closest approach to Earth will occur on August 21, 2021, at 11:10 a.m. ET (15:10 UTC). This means the best opportunity for amateur astronomers to try to see this asteroid glide by will be early on August 21, just hours before sunrise. See charts below.
NASA/JPL has classified 2016 AJ193 as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid. However, the space rock’s orbit is well known and there is no risk of impact.