The enormous asteroid set to skim past Earth this week

The asteroid has a diameter of about 570 metres.
The asteroid has a diameter of about 570 metres. Photo credit: Getty

A massive asteroid is expected to race by the Earth this week, but scientists say there's nothing to worry about.

Asteroid 2006 QQ23, which has a diameter of about 570 metres, CNN reports, and is scheduled to pass by on Saturday.

But scientists have confirmed the asteroid is "more or less benign," estimating it's about 80 million kilometres away.

It's also estimated the asteroid is no longer than 33km, CNN reports.

Lindley Johnson, of NASA's planetary defence coordination office, said asteroids of a similar size pass Earth about six times every year.

"It's the ones that we don't know about that we're concerned about," she told CNN.

Meanwhile, reports this week that a tsunami could wide up the west coast of North America should an asteroid plunge into the Pacific Ocean have gone viral.

It's called 99942 Apophis, and is 340m wide - about the size of Mt Eden.

Scientists believe it'll skim by 31,000km from the ground.

In 2008, at a lecture in San Francisco, astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson reportedly revealed: "If it goes through the centre, it will plunge down into the Pacific Ocean to a depth of three miles, at which point it explodes, caveating the Pacific in a hole that's three miles wide.

"That will send a tsunami wave outwards from that location that is 50 feet high."

However, NASA says the chance of it reaching Earth in 2036 is one in 45,000.