NASA has detected the largest and possibly most dangerous asteroid that will approach Earth in November. If this asteroid collides with the planet, it could destroy an entire major city or generate massive tsunamis.

The approaching asteroid has been identified by NASA’s Center for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) as 481394 (2006 SF6). According to the agency, this asteroid is currently moving at an average speed of almost 18,000 miles per hour.

As indicated in CNEOS’ database, this asteroid has an estimated diameter of 2,034 feet. Compared with the other asteroids in CNEOS’ list, 481394 (2006 SF6) is the biggest space rock that will fly past Earth next month.

According to CNEOS, 481394 (2006 SF6) is an Aten asteroid. This means that as the asteroid completes its cycle around the Sun, its orbit occasionally crosses with that of Earth. This usually happens when the asteroid is near its farthest point from the Sun.

Due to the space rock’s size and natural orbit, it has been classified by CNEOS as a potentially hazardous asteroid.

“Potentially Hazardous Asteroids are currently defined based on parameters that measure the asteroid’s potential to make threatening close approaches to the Earth,” CNEOS explained in a statement.

“Specifically, all asteroids with a minimum orbit intersection distance of 0.05 [astronomical units] or less and an absolute magnitude (H) of 22.0 or less are considered [potentially hazardous asteroids],” the agency added.

Given the asteroid’s massive size, it is capable of causing high levels of destruction during an impact event. The energy that will be generated from the asteroid’s impact would be powerful enough to level an area that’s as big as a major city.

If 481394 (2006 SF6) ends up hitting the ocean, the impact would generate massive tsunamis that are capable of traveling for several miles away.

According to CNEOS, 481394 (2006 SF6) will completely miss Earth during its approach next month. The asteroid is expected to fly past the planet on Nov. 20 at 8:01 pm EDT. During this time, the asteroid will be about 0.02886 astronomical units or around 2.7 million miles from the planet’s center.

asteroids_passing_earth Pictured; an artistic illustration of an asteroid flying by Earth. Photo: NASA