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NASA confirms chance asteroid will hit Earth right before election, but ‘no threat’

Asteroid 2018 VP1 has a chance of hitting Earth on Nov. 2, 2020. This view is of the asteroid's expected location on Oct. 20, 2020. (NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory/TNS)

NASA will see your double hurricane and raise you an asteroid.

That seemed to be the case over the weekend as the internet reacted to the news that an asteroid has a chance of hitting the earth the day before the election.

The Center for Near Earth Objects Studies at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory states that asteroid 2018 VP1 has a 0.41% chance of entering Earth’s atmosphere on Nov. 2.

NASA retweeted the statement from the center’s Twitter account @AsteroidWatch, which wanted to remind people it “poses no threat to Earth!”

NASA said the uncertainty in whether or not the asteroid will strike is based on a series of observations over a couple of weeks.

Even if it did strike, it’s relatively small at about 6.5 feet, and “would disintegrate due to its extremely small size.”

Still, the news that an asteroid could hit the Earth near election day in the U.S. in a year that has seen murder hornets, fire tornadoes and the coronavirus pandemic, was not much of a surprise to many.

A common comment was the political ad for “Giant Meteor 2020 — Just end it already.”


© 2020 The Orlando Sentinel

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