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Keyword: asteroid

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  • Three-mile-wide Asteroid 3200 Phaethon to skim Earth just before Christmas Read more:

    11/24/2017 6:01:48 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 23 replies
    A gigantic space rock called 3200 Phaethon is due to brush ‘quite close’ to our planet on December 17, Russian astronomers have revealed. This huge asteroid is thought to cause the beautiful Geminids meteor shower which will take place between December 13 and 14, causing hundreds of bright meteors to illuminate the night sky as they burn up in Earth’s atmosphere. But NASA has also described it as a ‘potentially hazardous asteroid whose path misses Earth’s orbit by only 2 million miles‘ – which is tiny in galactic terms. It’s about half the size of Chicxulub, the rock which wiped...
  • Solar System’s First Interstellar Visitor Dazzles Scientists

    11/23/2017 9:07:33 AM PST · by EBH · 46 replies
    NASA ^ | 11/20/2017
    Now, new data reveal the interstellar interloper to be a rocky, cigar-shaped object with a somewhat reddish hue. The asteroid, named ‘Oumuamua by its discoverers, is up to one-quarter mile (400 meters) long and highly-elongated—perhaps 10 times as long as it is wide. That aspect ratio is greater than that of any asteroid or comet observed in our solar system to date. While its elongated shape is quite surprising, and unlike asteroids seen in our solar system, it may provide new clues into how other solar systems formed. The observations and analyses were funded in part by NASA and appear...
  • Dwarf Planet Ceres May Have Had a Global Ocean in Ancient Past

    11/13/2017 6:39:42 PM PST · by ETL · 28 replies
    Space.com ^ | November 8, 2017 | Nola Taylor Redd, Space.com Contributor
    Nestled in the asteroid belt, the dwarf planet Ceres contains water-rich materials that suggest it once boasted a global ocean in its distant past. Now, two new studies from NASA's Dawn mission may reveal traces of an ancient ocean in the crust, with remnants left behind in the muddy mantle beneath.  Scientists used the tug of gravity on NASA's Dawn spacecraft to track gravitational features across the dwarf planet Ceres. Combined with models of the evolution of the icy surfaces, these observations reveal an ocean mostly frozen into a strong but flexible crust, with a mud-rich inner layer that keeps...
  • Massive ‘anomaly’ lurks beneath ice in Antarctica

    12/29/2016 2:12:09 PM PST · by heterosupremacist · 64 replies
    http://nypost.com ^ | 12/29/2016 | Jasper hamill
    Scientists believe a massive object that could change our understanding of history is hidden beneath the Antarctic ice. The huge and mysterious “anomaly” is thought to be lurking beneath the frozen wastes of an area called Wilkes Land. The area is 151 miles across and has a minimum depth of about 2,700 feet. Some researchers believe it is the remains of a truly massive asteroid more than twice the size of the Chicxulub space rock that wiped out the dinosaurs. If this explanation is true, it could mean this killer asteroid caused the Permian-Triassic extinction event, which killed 96 percent...
  • Asteroid that just buzzed Earth may not miss on return visit

    10/13/2017 10:58:04 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 46 replies
    C-Net ^ | October 12, 2017 2:34 PM PDT | by Eric Mack
    Asteroid 2012 TC4 doesn't have a very memorable name, but it might leave quite an impression years from now. The house-sized asteroid that just passed by Earth, almost as close as many satellites in orbit, will be back -- and a future visit might lead to it taking up permanent residency here. On Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, Asteroid 2012 TC4 safely passed by our planet at an altitude of 27,300 miles (44,000 kilometers), just a few thousand miles above the level of satellites in geosychronous orbit. That's nearly twice as close as when it passed us almost exactly five years ago,...
  • House-sized asteroid will pass by Earth at just above satellite altitude

    10/11/2017 7:26:47 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 30 replies
    The Guardian ^ | 10 Oct, 2017 | Agence France-Presse
    A house-size asteroid will give Earth a near-miss on Thursday, giving experts a rare chance to rehearse for a real-life strike threat as it passes inside the moon’s orbit. Dubbed 2012 TC4, the space rock will shave past at an altitude of less than 44,000km (27,300 miles) – just above the 36,000km altitude at which hundreds of geosynchronous satellites orbit the Earth. That represents about an eighth of the distance between the Earth and the moon. Nasa’s Mike Kelley, who leads the exercise to spot, track and intimately probe the transient visitor, insisted there was “no danger. Not even for...
  • Close approach of asteroid 2012 TC4 poses no danger to Earth

    10/10/2017 8:13:24 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    phys.org ^ | October 10, 2017 | Tomasz Nowakowski,
    Asteroid 2012 TC4 was discovered on Oct. 4, 2012 by the Pan-STARRS observatory in Hawaii. Week later, it gave Earth a close shave when it passed the planet at the distance of 0.247 LD (lunar distance), or 58,900 miles (94,800 kilometers). Observations reveal that 2012 TC4 is an elongated and rapidly rotating object that has been known to make many close approaches to Earth in the past. The space rock orbits the sun approximately every 1.67 years at a distance of about 1.4 AU. Astronomers estimate that 2012 TC4 has a diameter between 26 to 85 feet (8 to 26...
  • NASA Is Testing Its Asteroid Defense System With a Real Asteroid

    10/05/2017 8:16:53 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 7 replies
    popularmechanics.com ^ | Oct 5, 2017 | Avery Thompson
    NASA will coordinate with observatories around the world to try and get an exact trajectory for the asteroid in the days leading up to the flyby.... "This is the perfect target for such an exercise because while we know the orbit of 2012 TC4 well enough to be absolutely certain it will not impact Earth, we haven't established its exact path just yet," says Paul Chodas, manager of NASA's Center for Near Earth Object Studies. This experiment will test how well NASA can determine the orbit of a newly detected asteroid that might pose a danger to us. If the...
  • Asteroid Florence has two moons

    09/06/2017 6:56:18 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    phys.org ^ | September 6, 2017
    Radar images obtained between August 29 and September 1, when Florence came closest to Earth, reveal that the asteroid is about 2.8 miles (4.5 kilometers) in size, the US space agency said. It said the two moons were probably between 300-1,000 feet (100-300 meters) across. The inner moon takes approximately eight hours to revolve around Florence while the outer moon takes between 22 and 27 hours, NASA said. NASA said the radar images of Florence, which was discovered in 1981, were obtained by the Goldstone Deep Space Communications Complex in California.
  • Nearly 3-mile wide asteroid to pass close by Earth Sept. 1

    08/30/2017 6:17:25 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 25 replies
    www.spaceflightinsider.com ^ | 08-29-2017 | Staff
    Asteroid Florence will pass by Earth on Sept. 1, 2017, at a distance of 4.4 million miles (7 million kilometers). Image Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech A large rock will fly past Earth on Sept. 1, 2017, at a distance of 4.4 million miles (7 million kilometers). Asteroid 3122 Florence, named after modern nursing founder Florence Nightingale, is the largest object to make a close-encounter since NASA began tracking near-Earth objects (NEO) in the 1990s. “While many known asteroids have passed by closer to Earth than Florence will on Sept. 1, all of those were estimated to be smaller,” said Paul...
  • A THREE MILE wide asteroid is set to graze past Earth on Sept. 1 - and NASA says it's the largest

    08/18/2017 4:14:12 PM PDT · by george76 · 40 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | 18 August 2017 | Cheyenne Macdonald
    A THREE MILE wide asteroid is set to graze past Earth on Sept. 1 - and NASA says it's the largest to come this close since they began keeping track ... [ full ] This is the closest an object this large has come ... since 1890. A massive asteroid estimated to be 2.7 miles wide is set to make a ‘relatively close encounter’ with Earth on September 1. ... The asteroid, named for Florence Nightingale, was first spotted in 1981, and the flyby in September will be the closest it’s come to Earth since 1890. ... According to NASA,...
  • Impending Asteroid Flyby Will be a Chance to Test NASA’s Planetary Defense Network!

    08/01/2017 4:18:27 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 20 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | 1 Aug , 2017 | Matt Williams
    This coming October, an asteroid will fly by Earth. Known as 2012 TC4, this small rock is believed to measure between 10 and 30 meters (30 and 100 feet) in size. As with most asteroids, this one is expected to sail safely past Earth without incident. This will take place on October 12th, when the asteroid will pass us at a closest estimated distance of 6,800 kilometers (4,200 miles) from Earth’s surface. That’s certainly good news. But beyond the fact that it does not pose a threat to Earth, NASA is also planning on using the occasion to test their...
  • A plane-size asteroid buzzes by Earth undetected

    07/27/2017 10:37:31 AM PDT · by John W · 22 replies
    cnet.com ^ | July 27, 2017 | Eric Mack
    Astronomers first spotted an asteroid about as long as a 737 passenger jet on Sunday and analyzed its path to determine it had made a close pass by our planet three days earlier. In other words, the big space rock slipped right by us without being detected and was only seen in our cosmic rear-view mirror. While the asteroid, now named 2017 001, flew right on by without incident, it was a relatively close pass. It came within about one-third the distance between Earth and the moon, roughly 76,448 miles (123,031 km). With an estimated size of between 82 and...
  • Did a Planetary Society citizen scientist help find one of Earth’s biggest impact craters?

    07/03/2017 12:22:01 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 13 replies
    Planetary Society ^ | 6/12/17 | Jason Davis
    Did a Planetary Society citizen scientist help find one of Earth’s biggest impact craters? About 66 million years ago, a 10-kilometer-wide hunk of rock smashed into Earth near what is now Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula.The impact created a global dust cloud that snuffed out the sunlight, leading to the demise of 80 percent of Earth's plants and animals—including most of the dinosaurs. A 200-kilometer-wide crater buried near the city of Chicxulub is all that's left. It's ground zero for one of the world's most notable extinction events.But throughout Earth's history, there have actually been five major extinction events. The largest of...
  • ASTEROID WARNING: NASA discovers TEN ‘potentially hazardous’ rocks close to Earth

    06/11/2017 6:50:35 PM PDT · by John W · 61 replies
    Daily Express ^ | June 11, 2017 | Sean Martin
    NASA has announced that it has discovered 10 new “potentially hazardous” space rocks close to Earth that could put life on this planet at risk. The space agency has been working tirelessly to identify dangers that Earth face from space, and has said that it has found 10 new asteroids or meteors which it believes could harm life on Earth. The discovery was made by NASA’s asteroid detecting mission – Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer or NEOWISE.
  • New Impact Flash Seen on Jupiter

    05/31/2017 7:10:17 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 14 replies
    Sky & Telescope ^ | 5/28/17 | Bob King
    Yet another Jovian fireball? On May 26th, amateur astronomers recorded a rare impact flash in Jupiter's north polar region. Jupiter just got beaned for the sixth time (that we know about)! On the evening of May 26th, between 19:24.6 and 19:26.2 Universal Time, Sauveur Pedranghelu, a French amateur from Corsica, detected an impact flash live on video in Jupiter's north polar region. The flash was very brief, lasting only about 0.7 second, and displayed two brightness peaks. A bright dot — about the size of Europa when seen in transit — marked the site of impact at latitude 51° north...
  • NASA Moves Up Launch of Psyche Mission to a Metal Asteroid

    05/25/2017 5:08:43 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    nasa ^ | 05/24/2017 | Editor: Martin Perez
    Psyche, NASA's Discovery Mission to a unique metal asteroid, has been moved up one year with launch in the summer of 2022, and with a planned arrival at the main belt asteroid in 2026 -- four years earlier than the original timeline. “We challenged the mission design team to explore if an earlier launch date could provide a more efficient trajectory to the asteroid Psyche, and they came through in a big way,” said Jim Green, director of the Planetary Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “This will enable us to fulfill our science objectives sooner and at a...
  • Newly Discovered House-Sized Asteroid 2017 HX4 Flew Safely Past the Earth Yesterday

    05/10/2017 7:53:58 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 23 replies
    univiersetoday.com ^ | 05/09/2017 | Matt Williams
    2017 HX4 passed us by at a very safe distance. In fact, the asteroid’s closest approach to Earth was estimated to be at a distance of 3.7 Lunar Distances (LD) – i.e. almost four times the distance between the Earth and the Moon. This, and other pertinent information was tweeted in advance by the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center (IAU MPC) on April 29th. This object was first spotted on April 26th, 2017, using the 1.8 meter Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (Pan-STARRS), located at the summit of Haleakala in Hawaii. Since that time, it has been...
  • Big Asteroid Is Heading Close to Earth

    04/09/2017 9:07:21 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 36 replies
    VOA ^ | 04/08/2017
    A relatively large asteroid will cross Earth's orbit around the sun this month. Astrophysicists and astronomers say there is no chance of a collision, but it will be the closest flyby of an asteroid that large for at least another 10 years. Asteroid 2014 JO25, discovered three years ago, is about 650 meters (2,100 feet) in diameter, 60 times as large as the small asteroid that plunged into our atmosphere as a meteor and exploded over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk in 2013. That blast was felt thousands of kilometers away and caused havoc on the ground, damaging more than...
  • Asteroid to Fly Safely Past Earth on April 19 (Asteroid 2014 JO25, Diameter = 2,000 feet)

    04/07/2017 1:13:54 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | 4/6/17
    A relatively large near-Earth asteroid discovered nearly three years ago will fly safely past Earth on April 19 at a distance of about 1.1 million miles (1.8 million kilometers), or about 4.6 times the distance from Earth to the moon. Although there is no possibility for the asteroid to collide with our planet, this will be a very close approach for an asteroid of this size. The asteroid, known as 2014 JO25, was discovered in May 2014 by astronomers at the Catalina Sky Survey near Tucson, Arizona -- a project of NASA's NEO Observations Program in collaboration with the University...