The European Space Agency (ESA) has detected a new asteroid that has a non-zero chance of hitting Earth in the future. Based on the information collected by both ESA and NASA, the possible impact event might happen around 60 years from now.

The asteroid, known as 2019 DS1, is the latest addition to the ESA’s Risk List, which catalogs space rocks that have non-zero impact probabilities. According to the ESA, 2019 DS1 has only been in the list for almost 190 days.

ESA's Risk List is "a catalogue of all objects for which a non-zero impact probability has been detected."

As indicated in the agency’s database, the asteroid has an Apollo-type orbit. This means that like other Apollo asteroids, 2019 DS1’s orbit occasionally intersects with that of Earth as the planet goes around the Sun.

According to the ESA, the asteroid’s minimum orbit intersection distance from Earth is only 0.00095 astronomical units or roughly 88,308 miles. Although this seems like a long and safe distance, 80,000 miles in space is very short, especially for asteroids.

Factors such as gravitational keyholes can drastically alter an asteroid’s path and can nudge 2019 DS1 into a direct collision course with Earth. Due to the asteroid’s close-intersections with Earth, ESA calculated that the asteroid’s chances of hitting the planet are one out of 787. The agency predicted that if an impact event would happen, it would take place on Feb. 26, 2082.

The ESA’s U.S. counterpart NASA noted that in 2082, 2019 DS1 will approach the planet from a distance of 0.00112 astronomical units or roughly 104,110 miles. This is less than half of the distance between the Earth and the Moon.

Since 2019 DS1 is only about 85 feet, this asteroid will probably not hit the ground even if it collides with Earth. Due to its small size, the asteroid will most likely break up and explode in the air shortly after entering Earth’s atmosphere.

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