Discovered “killer planet” is heading towards Earth

Astronomers have just issued a warning about a “giant” asteroid described as a “killer planet” that is likely to crash into Earth.

According to a report published in The Astronomical Journal, Scott Sheppard and colleagues at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington (USA) said that 2022 AP7 is one of three newly discovered cases of near-Earth action.

It lurks somewhere in the orbit between Earth and Venus, and the “shielding” of sunlight makes 2022 AP7 extremely difficult to detect.

This is the largest asteroid found in more than 8 years. This asteroid, named 2022 AP7, has a diameter of nearly 1.5km. 2022 AP7 will pass through Earth’s orbit and be “potentially dangerous”.

Asteroids like 2022 AP7 are difficult to detect because they are located in a region where the Sun’s glare makes modern telescopes like James Webb or Hubble unusable.

2022 AP7 was detected using the Victor M. Blanco 4-meter Telescope Dark Energy Camera at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Coquimbo, northern Chile.

Currently, astronomers are also unable to make an assessment of whether 2022 AP7 will collide with Earth, as well as when this disaster will occur.

Sheppard said there are very few near-Earth asteroids of this size. “So far, we have found two large asteroids orbiting near Earth with a diameter of about 1 km, the size of which we call the ‘killer planet’,” the astronomer shared.

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