Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Asteroid Making a Close Earth Pass

via Astrobiology, a recently discovered near Earth asteroid called 2007 TU24 is making a very close pass (334,000 miles) past our lovely blue orb early tommorrow morning (2:30 AM Central), going by just outside the Moon's orbit of 250,000 miles. it was discovered last October by the NASA sponsored Catalina Sky Survey. The Jet Propulsion Lab has acquired imagery of the asteroid, which is around 800 feet in diameter.

""This will be the closest approach by a known asteroid of this size or larger until 2027," said Don Yeomans, manager of the Near Earth Object Program Office. "As its closest approach is about one-and-a-half times the distance of Earth to the moon, there is no reason for concern. On the contrary, Mother Nature is providing us an excellent opportunity to perform scientific observations."

While there is no danger to the planet, it might be noted that the impact of such a object on Earth would cause consderable regional damage and would likely have a substantial global impact as well.

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