"Updated orbital calculations show 2011 MD will safely pass Earth June 27 1701UTC/1:01pmET, 7,600 miles above Earth's surface," NASA tweeted yesterday, later confirming the fly-by.
Asteroids of this size only come this close to Earth about once every six years. This particular asteroid was discovered by the LINEAR near-Earth object discovery team observing from Socorro, New Mexico. For a time, astronomy fans might have been able to view it via a modest-sized telescope, according to NASA.
Those fearing a real-life space disaster movie here on Earth should stop worrying. NASA said the probability of a near-Earth object (NEO) like 2011 MD actually striking our planet is "essentially zero."
"There are no known NEO's on a collision course with the Earth," the agency said. "There is a possibility that an as yet undiscovered large NEO may hit the Earth, but the probability of this happening over the next 100 years is extremely small."