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IRON AND ICE
Two Asteroids To Pass By Earth Wednesday
by Staff Writers
Pasadena CA (JPL) Sep 08, 2010


Two small asteroids in unrelated orbits will pass within the moon's distance of Earth on Wed. Both should be observable with moderate-sized amateur telescopes.

Two asteroids, several meters in diameter and in unrelated orbits, will pass within the moon's distance of Earth on Wednesday, Sept. 8.

Both asteroids should be observable near closest approach to Earth with moderate-sized amateur telescopes. Neither of these objects has a chance of hitting Earth.

A 10-meter-sized near-Earth asteroid from the undiscovered population of about 50 million would be expected to pass almost daily within a lunar distance, and one might strike Earth's atmosphere about every 10 years on average.

The Catalina Sky Survey near Tucson, Ariz., discovered both objects on the morning of Sunday, Sept. 5, during a routine monitoring of the skies.

The Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Mass., first received the observations Sunday morning, determined preliminary orbits and concluded that both objects would pass within the distance of the moon about three days after their discovery.

Near-Earth asteroid 2010 RX30 is estimated to be 32 to 65 feet (10 to 20 meters) in size and will pass within 0.6 lunar distances of Earth (about 154,000 miles, or 248,000 kilometers) at 2:51 a.m. PDT (5:51 a.m. EDT) Wednesday.

The second object, 2010 RF12, estimated to be 20 to 46 feet (6 to 14 meters) in size, will pass within 0.2 lunar distances (about 49,088 miles or 79,000 kilometers) a few hours later at 2:12 p.m. PDT (5:12 pm EDT).

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Related Links
More information about asteroids
Asteroid and Comet Mission News, Science and Technology






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IRON AND ICE
Asteroid survey gathers mixed bag
Washington (UPI) Sep 2, 2010
A survey of near-Earth asteroids shows they come in a far wider variety of shapes, sizes and surfaces than previously thought, U.S. researchers say. The findings are based on infrared scanning of about 100 asteroids by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, SPACE.com reported Thursday. The effort is part of a larger Spitzer telescope project to look at 700 near-Earth objects to identify ... read more


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