Large Asteroid Whizzes Past Earth

February 16, 2013, Saturday // 10:44
Bulgaria: Large Asteroid Whizzes Past Earth
Image by NASA

A closely tracked asteroid, roughly 50 meters in size, whizzed safely past Earth on Friday.

The asteroid, dubbed 2012 DA 14, passed around 27,000 kilometers (17,200 miles) above the Earth at the time of closest approach, about 9:25 pm EET.

NASA said in a statement on its website that this was "the closest-ever predicted approach to Earth for an object this large."

The 2012 DA14, which is weighting about 130,000 metric tons, was first spotted by chance by astronomers after passing nearby last February.

According to the European Space Agency the 2012 DA14 and Friday's meteor strike in Russia are not related.

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