Asteroid 2012 DA14 Set For Record-Breaking Earth Pass

by
Sheena
On Friday, asteroid 2012 DA14 will make a close approach to our planet than any other known asteroid since systematic surveys of the sky began in the mid-1990s.

Asteroid

On Friday, asteroid 2012 DA14 will make a close approach to our planet than any other known asteroid since systematic surveys of the sky began in the mid-1990s.

Asteroid 2012 DA14 will race pass the Earth just 17,100 miles above our heads but still it poses no threat of running into the planet. However its distance is closer than the geosynchronous satellites that orbit the Earth.

Though this space rock is relatively large, it will not be visible with the naked eye. The object will only be able to be seen through binoculars and telescopes for about four hours between 18:00 and 22:00 GMT and would be best seen from Australia, Asia and Europe.

Asteroid

Accordingto Don Yeomans of Nasa's Near-Earth Object Observation Programme, an asteroid like 2012 DA14 flies this close on average only once every 40 years.

There have been speculations that if there’s a link between the recent meteor strike in Russiathat has injured hundreds and 2012 DA14. Scientists have given their suggestions and have thrown light on the fact that there’s no link at all.

Prof Alan Fitzsimmons, of the Astrophysics Research Centre at Queen's University Belfast, said there was "almost definitely" no connection. "One reason is that 2012 DA14 is approaching Earth from the south, and this object hit in the northern hemisphere," he said.

Now that these speculations after the unfortunate incident in Urals have been cleared by the scientists, those who eagerly wish to witness this record-breaking earth pass, today is your day to try.

Keen viewers can find several live streams of the record-break earth pass on the internet. NASA Television will also broadcast a live webcast, featuring commentary and images from telescopes around the world.

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