A rogue-like asteroid shaped like a waddling hippo has just crossed the Earth.
The space rock, which is one mile long, was potentially dangerous According to NASA.
In the near flyby, the object – called SD220 in 2003 – sat within 1.8 million miles, or about seven times the distance between the Earth and the Moon.
NASA researchers made space rock radar measurements comparing their shape to the "exposed part of a hippopotamus wading in a river".
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This was the closest approach for over four centuries, and the object will not be so close for 52 years.
Pictures showed that the rock rotates once every 12 days and has a complex spin that resembles badly thrown American football.
19659005] The asteroid, first discovered in 2003, is considered a "potent" because of its size and its approach to Earth orbit extremely dangerous.
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The latest radar measurements, however, do not confirm a future impact threat to Earth.
Scans were taken by coordinating NASA's 70-meter antenna in California, the National Science Foundation's 100-meter telescope in West Virginia, and the Arecibo Observatory's 305-meter antenna in Puerto Rico.
"The radar images reach unprecedented levels of detail and are comparable to those from a spacecraft," said Lares Benner, head of observation at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.
Click here to read more information in The Sun History was originally published.