NASA warned that two asteroids with Earth-crossing orbits are currently speeding towards the planet. According to the agency, these two asteroids will cross Earth’s path this weekend.

The first approaching asteroid has been identified by the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) as 2019 WH2. As indicated in CNEOS’ database, this asteroid is currently flying toward Earth at an average speed of almost 36,600 kilometers per hour. The agency estimated that this asteroid is about 79 feet wide.

Trailing behind 2019 WH2 is an asteroid known as 2019 WN1. Like 2019 WH2, 2019 WN1 is also traveling at speeds of over 36,000 kilometers per hour. CNEOS stated that this asteroid has an estimated diameter of 98 feet.

Both approaching asteroids are officially classified as Apollos. Like other asteroids that belong to this group, 2019 WH2 and 2019 WN1 have wide orbits that go around the Earth and the Sun. From time to time, their orbits intersect with that of Earth as it travels around the giant star.

If these asteroids collide with the planet during one of their near-Earth intersections, they will most likely burn up and explode in the atmosphere instead of hitting the ground due to their size.

However, this does not automatically mean that those on the ground are safe from the approaching asteroids. As previous incidents have shown, mid-air explosions caused by asteroids can be dangerous.

For instance, in 2013, an asteroid that was about 66 feet wide detonated over a populated region in Russia. The energy released by the blast was equivalent to around 30 atomic bombs.

Although the space rock exploded at a very high altitude, its energy was powerful enough to damage about 7,000 buildings on the ground. According to reports, around 1,500 people were seriously injured during the incident.

According to CNEOS, 2019 WH2 and 2019 WN1 are not in danger of hitting Earth during their upcoming approach. 2019 WH2 is expected to fly past the planet on Dec. 1 at 4:15 am EST from a distance of 0.00871 astronomical units or roughly 810,000 miles away.

2019 WN1, on the other hand, will approach Earth on Dec. 1 at 4:14 pm EST. During this time, the asteroid will be about 0.01095 astronomical units or around 1 million miles from the planet’s surface.

Two Very Different Asteroids
Image of two different asteroids captured by NASA. NASA/JPL/JHUAPL