is the largest asteroid to pass by our planet this close since the NASA program to detect and track near-Earth asteroids began,” Paul Chodas, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said of the fly-by. Radar images of the giant rock obtained from NASA’s Goldstone Solar System center in California have provided the first-up close views of Florence, named after 19th-century English nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale. MORE
Giant asteroid with two moons whizzes past Earth!
The largest asteroid to come so close to Earth in over a century whizzed by the planet Friday without a hitch – and revealed two tiny moons in the process. The highly anticipated asteroid ‘3122 Florence,’ measuring a whopping 2.8 miles (4.5 kilometers) in width, came within 4.4 million miles (7 million km) of Earth. The gap is the equivalent of 18 times the distance from our planet to the moon. “Florence