The huge space rock is traveling more than 20,000 miles per hour (32,400 km/h) and is considered to be a ‘potentially hazardous’ object given its proximity – but, its trajectory should see it soar safely by in the early days of September. According to NASA, asteroid 2017 NF23 is about 230 to 525 feet wide (70-160 kilometers).
That means even low-balling, the object is about as wide as the length of a Boeing 747 – and on the high end of the estimate, it could be double that. At 525 feet, it would be taller than Egypt’s Great Pyramid of Giza, which stands at about 455 feet. NASA tracks this and other near-Earth objects (NEOs) to keep track of any potential incoming threats. This particular space rock is classified within the ‘Atens’ group, named for asteroid 1862 Atens, because of its Earth-crossing orbit and smaller semi-major axis.
In comparison, just 10 percent of these smaller – but still potentially catastrophic – objects are thought to have been found to date.