These are the biggest asteroids and the threats they pose to our planet

Our solar system is full of extraterrestrial bodies that are too small to be planets, too stationary to be comets and stuck in orbits around the Sun like Earth.

Asteroids, or small planets, can be more boring than the science fiction version or the historical version.

Most, even the greatest, are invisible.

Most of them do not collide with the ground.

That is, the famous physicist Stephen Hawking warned us to prepare for a giant asteroid to hit the Earth.

Nor is it necessarily the largest asteroid in our solar system.

Source: Charles University Astronomical Institute [CC BY SA 4.0] via Wikimedia Commons

15 Eunomia is a rocky asteroid found in the main asteroid belt (between Mars and Jupiter).

It is the largest of a family of asteroids, with smaller asteroids of similar material orbiting it.

Astronomers believe it is a larger minor planetary body that retains 70% of its original mass.

The rest has been lost in the main body but is still visible nearby in the form of a small asteroid also called Eunomia.

The alien ship in the movie Arrival was based on the shape of this asteroid.

Source: From Franco and Pilcher (2015) – [CC BY 4.0] via Wikimedia Commons

Wilhelm Tempel discovered this asteroid orbiting the Sun in the asteroid belt far beyond Jupiter.

It is the largest of the Cybele family of asteroids.

There are other asteroid families that have similar orbits to the Cybele asteroids, and then belong to the Cybele group.

Astronomers believe that the asteroid Cybele was once part of a larger planetary body.

There are different types of asteroids in the group.

However, the 65 Cybele is made mostly of water, ice and silicone.

Early observers (after Tempel) believed that the asteroid was one.

Source: By F.

Marchis [Public Domain] via Wikimedia Commons

Silvia is unique among asteroids in its main belt, or elsewhere in our solar system.

There are two small moons around it.

English astronomer N.R. Pogson was the first to find the body.

Only later did astronomers observe the moon.

The larger outer moon is called Romulus.

The little one is called Remus.

The first was found in 2001, the second in 2004.

Coincidentally, Pogson said the asteroid he discovered was named after Silvia, the mother of the mythical twins Romulus and Remus.

He did not know that the asteroid had a moon.

Source: [Public Domain] from Wikimedia Commons

This asteroid is located in the main belt.

It is dark due to the composition of the carbonaceous material believed by observers.

Carbon is primarily an organic material, part of the building blocks of the solar system.

Therefore, asteroids likely formed early in the life of our solar system.

Asteroid mining companies (yes, they exist) believe that 511 David is the most valuable mining target in the solar system.

Source: Merline [CC BY SA 4.0] via Wikimedia Commons

The dark, carbonaceous asteroid is one of the largest of its kind.

Hernan Goldschmidt saw it through a telescope in the 19th century.

This asteroid shares a name with Jupiter’s moon.

52 Europa takes 5.5 years to complete one orbit around the sun.

This is the largest F-type asteroid in the solar system discovered so far.

At a distance of 3.9 astronomical units (AU) from the sun, it takes about five years to complete one revolution.

Astronomers believe that Interamnia is dense and relatively solid.

It has endured many collisions with other bodies in the asteroid belt.

Vincenzo Cerulli discovered the asteroid.

He named it after his hometown.

It is one of the largest asteroids, but one of the smallest in astronomy.

Source: NASA/CIT/UMASS [Public Domain]

This very dark asteroid is difficult to see from Earth due to its carbonaceous composition and distance from the Sun.

Despite its size and mass, it is smaller than other large asteroids.

Observers speculated that Hygiea held ice above her.

The International Astronomers Union once considered making Hygiea a planet.

However, the current definition of a planet does not include asteroids such as 10 Hygiea.

Source: NASA [Public Domain]

Source: NASA [Public Domain]

This asteroid was considered the first planet by Heinrich Wilhelm Matthäus Olbers, the astronomer who discovered Pallas in 1803.

Other astronomers believed it was a star and photographed it as such.

Pallas was recognized as an asteroid 42 years after Olbers discovered the celestial body.

This was after several other such bodies were found.

Slow-rotating asteroids are thought to be the remnants of protoplanets, bodies that never developed into planets, but show signs of possible planet formation when the solar system was young.

The name “2” comes from Pallas being the second asteroid discovered.

Source: By NASA / JPL / MPS / DLR / IDA / Björn Jónsson – [Public Domain] via Wikimedia Commons

Vesta is one of the Pallas-like asteroids, originally thought to be a planet.

Even a few years ago, the IAU considered making it a planet like Hygiea.

It is one of the largest and most massive objects in the main belt, making up 9% of the total mass, which is large considering the abundance of asteroids in the belt.

Collisions with other smaller bodies have caused parts of Vesta to fall to Earth over time.

NASA has collected important data from Vesta.

Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers, the man who discovered Pallas (#4) also discovered Vesta a few years later.

In 2007, NASA launched the Dawn satellite on a mission to study Vesta.

Dawn reached the asteroid in 2012.

Type: dwarf planet

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Year of discovery: 1801

Source: By Justin Cowart [CC BY 2.0] via Wikimedia Commons

1 Ceres is the largest asteroid in the main asteroid belt and the 33rd largest in the Solar System.

When Giuseppe Piazzi saw it.

It was soon classified as an asteroid when other similar celestial bodies were discovered.

It was classified as a dwarf planet by the IAU in 2006.

The Dawn spacecraft flew by Ceres after completing Vesta.

Ceres has been found to be covered in craters, some of which contain organic material.

In one, Dawn found evidence of water molecules.

Scientists believe that Ceres is a living protoplanet and one of five other potentially habitable bodies in the solar system outside of Earth.

A woman brings 23 members of her family to work with her to test the man’s freedom

NASA scientists have discovered more than a million asteroids so far.

The rocky remains are left over from the initial formation of our solar system 4.6 billion years ago.

What are the five largest asteroids and are they dangerous to Earth?

Most of the 1,113,527 asteroids orbit the sun between Mars and Jupiter in the large asteroid belt.

Their size – from 329 miles in diameter to 33 meters in diameter, according to NASA.

Even if an asteroid could one day hit the earth, the chances are slim because they are so far away.

Astronomers scan the sky and regularly monitor asteroids to determine potential hazards, and we can likely know about potential hazards years in advance.

A spokesperson for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory said: “NASA is currently not aware of any asteroids or comets on a collision course with Earth, so the likelihood of a major collision is very low.

“Actually, as far as we know, nothing big is likely to hit Earth anytime in the next hundred years.”

NASA is tracking an asteroid called Bennu that has a 1/2700 chance of impacting Earth between 2175 and 2195.

But since it’s such a long time, here are the five biggest asteroids.

1. Ceres

1. Ceres

Two views of Ceres can be seen in images taken by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft from a distance of 52,000 miles.Reuters

The largest object in the asteroid belt between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter is Ceres.

It was the first asteroid discovered in 1801 and was originally thought to be a planet.

It was later classified as an asteroid in the 1850s, but was reclassified as a dwarf planet in 2006.

Although it is no longer an asteroid, it holds the first place because it is 580 kilometers in diameter.

Ceres is named after the Roman goddess of corn and harvest – and has the same origin as the word cereal.

It takes 1,682 Earth days – or 4.6 years – for Ceres to make one trip around the sun.

And it completes one rotation around the axis every nine hours.

2. Vesta

2. Vesta

In this handout from NASA, the giant asteroid Vesta is seen in an image taken by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft about 3,200 miles above Earth on July 24, 2011 in the Space.Getty Images

Vesta is officially the largest asteroid in the main asteroid belt, and the second largest body.

It was discovered in 1807 by Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers.

Vesta is about 329 miles in diameter, accounting for nearly nine percent of the mass of all asteroids.

Spherical in shape, Vesta is separated from Earth’s crust, mantle and core.

Pallas was named after the Greek goddess of wisdom after it was discovered in 1802.

It is about 318 miles in diameter and makes up seven percent of the asteroid’s total mass.

Unlike other asteroids, Pallas’ orbit is so inclined at 34.8 degrees that it is inaccessible to study.

4. Cleanliness

4. Cleanliness

Hygiea comes in fourth at 270 miles.

It is a large asteroid in the main belt, but could soon be considered a minor planet due to its almost spherical shape.

If so, it would be the smallest planet in our solar system.

Astronomer Annibale de Gasparis discovered the asteroid in 1849.

Hygiea is not considered dangerous because its orbit does not bring it close to Earth.

Rounding out the list of the largest asteroids is Interamnia.

The asteroid is 217.5 miles in diameter and orbits the sun every 1,950 days – or 5.34 years.

It is not considered possible to explore Interamnia because of the distance from Earth.

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