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Fact Check: Is a huge asteroid going to destroy the Earth on 29th April 2020?

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Summary

Although an asteroid is estimated to pass by Earth on April 29, 2020, no potential danger has been detected and the claims that the asteroid is going to hit Earth or end civilization is a hoax.

Several social media posts have been spreading a piece of news that a 4KM huge asteroid is set to hit Earth in April 2020 and possibly destroy civilization.

A Twitter user Bhawani Kumar Malhi tweeted, "@NASA confirmed an asteroid too close to hit Earth and end Humanity on 29 April 2020.


 

Similar claims have been made on Youtube as well.

The posts on social media have been shared based on an article published by express.co.uk and the title reads, “Asteroid warning: NASA tracks a 4KM asteroid approach - Could end civilization if it hits”. 

The information shared by the article is partially true as the huge asteroid does exist and is expected to pass by Earth soon. However, the claims that it will hit Earth in April 2020 is fake and misleading. The asteroid also called the (52768) 1998 OR2 is expected to fly past Earth on April 29, 2020, and its distance from Earth is found to be 6.3 million km. This asteroid is not a new discovery as if was first identified in 1998 and has been classified under “potentially hazardous objects” only because they pass near the Earth’s orbits periodically. A news article published by NASA reads, “Additional follow-up observations are required to more precisely determine the orbits of these asteroids, but preliminary projections show that 1998 OH can get no closer than about 5 million kilometers (about 3 million miles) -- about 12 times the distance between Earth and the Moon”. Thus, although it has been classified as a potentially hazardous object, the chances of the asteroid “destroying” Earth seems to be less and nothing to be feared about. It has also been reported to “safely pass Earth” by earthsky.org which suggests ways in which one can see the asteroid. 

The article initially published by express.co.uk had been edited to take out the unnecessary exaggerations which seemed to cause fear among some people.

In conclusion, although an asteroid is estimated to pass by Earth on April 29, 2020, no potential danger has been detected and the claims that the asteroid is going to hit Earth or end civilization is a hoax.

Note: You can reach out to us at support[at]facthunt.co.in if you find any issue with our articles.

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