News About Asteroids And Comets
April 15, 2017
Large asteroid to hurtle past Earth on April 19
Paris (AFP) April 14, 2017
An asteroid as big as the Rock of Gibraltar will streak past Earth on April 19 at a safe but uncomfortably close distance, according to astronomers. "Although there is no possibility for the asteroid to collide with our planet, this will be a very close approach for an asteroid this size," NASA said in a statement. Dubbed 2014-JO25 and roughly 650 metres (2,000 feet) across, the asteroid will come within 1.8 million kilometres (1.1 million miles) of Earth, less than five times the distance to th ... read more

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Rosetta's intimate portrait of a comet: read all about it
Rosetta's pioneering mission to explore a comet in unprecedented detail completed operations last year. As the science continues, members of the public, as well as scientists, can freely access hund ... more
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Comet That Took a Century to Confirm Passes by Earth
On April 1, 2017, comet 41P will pass closer than it normally does to Earth, giving observers with binoculars or a telescope a special viewing opportunity. Comet hunters in the Northern Hemisphere s ... more
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Wrong-way asteroid plays 'chicken' with Jupiter
For at least a million years, an asteroid orbiting the "wrong" way around the sun has been playing a cosmic game of chicken with giant Jupiter and with about 6,000 other asteroids sharing the giant ... more
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ExoTerra to become first privately owned space company to fly to an asteroid
NASA has awarded ExoTerra Corporation a $2.5M contract to demonstrate a novel solar electric propulsion system for CubeSats that will enable the shoebox-sized spacecraft to triple their available po ... more
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A Trojan in Retreat
For at least a million years, an asteroid orbiting the "wrong" way around the Sun has been playing a cosmic game of chicken with giant Jupiter and about 6,000 other asteroids sharing the giant plane ... more
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OSIRIS-REx asteroid search tests instruments, science team
During an almost two-week search, NASA's OSIRIS-REx mission team activated the spacecraft's MapCam imager and scanned part of the surrounding space for elusive Earth-Trojan asteroids - objects that ... more
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The many faces of Rosetta's comet 67P
Images returned from the European Space Agency's Rosetta mission indicate that during its most recent trip through the inner solar system, the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko was a very a ... more
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Ice in Ceres' shadowed craters linked to tilt history
Dwarf planet Ceres may be hundreds of millions of miles from Jupiter, and even farther from Saturn, but the tremendous influence of gravity from these gas giants has an appreciable effect on Ceres' ... more
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Collapsing cliff reveals comet's interior
Rosetta scientists have made the first compelling link between an outburst of dust and gas and the collapse of a prominent cliff, which also exposed the pristine, icy interior of the comet. Su ... more
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Cryovolcanism on Dwarf Planet Ceres
Among the most striking features on the surface of Ceres are the bright spots in the center of Occator crater which stood out already as NASA's space probe Dawn approached the dwarf planet. Scientis ... more
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Warped Meteor Showers Hit Earth at All Angles
Some meteor showers persist for weeks and months, even though Earth sweeps a big arc around the Sun during that time. The meteors arrive from a slightly different direction each day, which is a clue ... more
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Mechanism underlying size-sorting of rubble on asteroid Itokawa revealed
In 2005, the Hayabusa spacecraft developed by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) landed on Itokawa, a small near-Earth asteroid named after the famous Japanese rocket scientist Hideo Itok ... more
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Earth is bombarded at random, crater study shows
New analysis of Earth's myriad craters turned up no evidence of an impact pattern. Earth is bombarded at random, the research shows. ... more
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Long-Lasting Cryovolcanism on Dwarf Planet Ceres
Among the most striking features on the surface of Ceres are the bright spots in the center of Occator crater, which stood out already as NASA's space probe Dawn approached the dwarf planet. Scienti ... more
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Dawn Identifies Age of Ceres' Brightest Area
The bright central area of Ceres' Occator Crater, known as Cerealia Facula, is approximately 30 million years younger than the crater in which it lies, according to a new study in the Astronomical J ... more
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Earth is bombarded at random
Do mass extinctions, like the fall of the dinosaurs, and the formation of large impact craters on Earth occur together at regular intervals? "This question has been under discussion for more than th ... more
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Asteroid Split in Two and, Years Later, Developed Tails
Asteroids on the main belt, situated between Mars and Jupiter, move around the Sun in quasi circular orbits, so they do not undergo the temperature changes which, in comets, produce the characterist ... more
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NASA study hints at possible change in water 'fingerprint' of comet
A trip past the sun may have selectively altered the production of one form of water in a comet - an effect not seen by astronomers before, a new NASA study suggests. Astronomers from NASA's Goddard ... more
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Researchers aim to measure risk of exploding asteroids
As 2013's Chelyabinsk meteor proved, an asteroid doesn't have to make direct contact with Earth's surface to do considerable damage. ... more
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Surprising Dunes on Comet Chury
Surprising images from the Rosetta spacecraft show the presence of dune-like patterns on the surface of comet Chury. Researchers at the Laboratoire de Physique et Mecanique des Milieux Heterogenes ( ... more
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Dawn discovers evidence for organic material on Ceres
NASA's Dawn mission has found evidence for organic material on Ceres, a dwarf planet and the largest body in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Scientists using the spacecraft's visibl ... more
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Origin of spooky meteor noises reappraised by researchers
When a meteor is about to conk your neighborhood and gives fair warning by emitting sizzling, rustling and hissing sounds as it descends, you might think that the universe is being sporting. B ... more
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New data about 2 distant asteroids give a clue to the possible 'Planet Nine'
In the year 2000 the first of a new class of distant solar system objects was discovered, orbiting the Sun at a distance greater than that of Neptune: the "extreme trans Neptunian objects (ETNOs). T ... more
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Minor planet named Bernard
A minor planet in the Solar System will officially be known as Bernardbowen after Australian citizen science project theSkyNet won a competition to name the celestial body. The minor planet wa ... more
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