Saturday, February 2, 2013

Asteroid to set record close shave flyby

On February 15 an asteroid will swing very close to Earth. How Close? Try 17200 miles or 27680 km from Earth, thats well within the orbits of navigation and communication satellites. Asteroid 2012 DA14 was discovered last year by an amateur team of astronomers at the La Sagra Sky Survey observatory in Spain. While there is not any danger of the asteroid actually hitting the Earth none have been observed to come this close so far.

nbcnews reports:

"A fairly typical asteroid such as 2012 DA14 — which measures 150 feet (45 meters) across — zips by Earth about every 40 years, but only strikes every 1,200 years, Yeomans estimated, and the impact of such an object would not be catastrophic over a wide area.
Asteroid 2012 DA14 is about the same size of the object that exploded in the atmosphere above Siberia in 1908, leveling hundreds of square miles in what scientists now call the "Tunguska Event," NASA officials explained."

more here

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