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Large asteroid passes by Earth

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Posted at 10:26 PM, Feb 15, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-15 22:26:46-05

All eyes were on the sky today as a large asteroid passing by Earth was a little too close for comfort for some.

But for scientists, it's something they've been tracking for a long time.

Dan Mazanek is a technical lead for near-earth objects at NASA/Langley in Hampton.

He says the asteroid, known in the scientific world as "2012 da 14" was not connected to the meteor blast in Russia because of timing and their orbits.

The asteroid that passed by earth this afternoon was big, so big that some experts say that it was about half the size of a football field, and about as tall as City Hall in Downtown Norfolk!

This is the closest an object of this size has ever been to Earth flying slightly more than 17,000 miles above Earth's surface.