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Skull-shaped asteroid from Halloween 2015 about to fly by Earth again

Posted at 11:21 AM, Sep 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-27 13:34:35-04

A terrifying skull-shaped asteroid received plenty of nicknames after flying past Earth on Halloween three years ago, and it's is going to fly by again after Halloween this year. 

Some names include, "Great Pumpkin," "The Halloween Comet," and "Death Comet." The asteroid is suspected to be a dead comet since it appears to be lacking its water and other materials from orbiting the sun so many times.

Officially named 2015 TB145, the asteroid is roughly 2,100 feet wide and was originally discovered in October 2015 using the Pan-STARRS telescope in Hawaii before it flew past Earth on October 31, 2015. 

It was roughly 300,000 miles away from Earth, which is about 60,000 miles farther than the moon's orbit.

After a little over three years, it will fly by Earth again on November 11, 2018. However, this time it's going to be much farther from Earth as it passes; about 24 million miles away.

Although its approach will be much farther away than it was in 2015, scientists and astronomers are still excited to gather new data to learn about its composition and orbit.