Asteroid to whiz by Earth at closest distance in centuries

Asteroid to whiz by Earth at closest distance in centuries

This is the second large asteroid to make a close approach to Earth in recent months.

An asteroid referred to as Asteroid 2010 WC9 will pass by the Earth at a distance of half the lunar distance.

This long-lost asteroid was initially spotted by the "Catalina Sky Survey at the University of Arizona" on 30 November back in the year 2010. However, as it went toward the outer-reaches of the solar system, it became impossible for the group to keep track of its movement. On May 8, 2018 - nearly eight years later - astronomers discovered an asteroid and gave it the temporary designation ZJ99C60.

We imaged this object twice: First on May 9, when it was still known by its temporary designation ZJ99C60; then again on May 10, after it was identified as asteroid 2010 WC9, which had been a lost asteroid for eight years. Pacific time, is the closest approach of this particular asteroid in almost 300 years, according to EarthSky.

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An asteroid the size of a jumbo jet is about to buzz Earth, and you can learn all about the historic close encounter in a webcast this evening (May 14). The simple disintegration of the high-speed car-sized object had nevertheless been enough to blow up thousands of windows in several municipalities in the Urals, injuring more than 1,500 people. Those asteroids, however, pose no threat to Earth.

Astro enthusiasts and sky observers can watch the asteroid pass through. Experts say that an asteroid belonging to the Apollo group, you cannot notice with the naked eye, but can be seen in an Amateur telescope. But, persons wishing to see the asteroid can tune in to Slooh, the astronomy broadcasting service beginning at 4 pm Alaska time.

"Our display will update every five seconds".

The discovery and tracking of near-Earth asteroids is an ongoing global project which includes NASA as well as other agencies. The effort goes on all the time, but on some occasions, the size, speed, and chemical composition of these objects make it extremely hard to observe them in visual wavelength.

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