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Asteroid to fly by within Moon's orbit

Date:
April 8, 2010
Source:
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Summary:
A newly discovered asteroid, 2010 GA6, was expected to fly safely by Earth April 8. At time of closest approach 2010 GA6 will be about 359,000 kilometers (223,000 miles) away from Earth -- about 9/10ths the distance to the moon. The asteroid, approximately 22 meters (71 feet) wide, was discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey, Tucson, Az.

Orbit of asteroid 2010 GA6.
Credit: NASA/JPL

A newly discovered asteroid, 2010 GA6, was expected to fly safely by Earth this Thursday at 4:06 p.m. Pacific (23:06 U.T.C.). At time of closest approach 2010 GA6 will be about 359,000 kilometers (223,000 miles) away from Earth -- about 9/10ths the distance to the moon. The asteroid, approximately 22 meters (71 feet) wide, was discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey, Tucson, Az.

"Fly bys of near-Earth objects within the moon's orbit occur every few weeks," said Don Yeomans of NASA's Near-Earth Object Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.

NASA detects and tracks asteroids and comets passing close to Earth using both ground and space-based telescopes. The Near-Earth Object Observations Program, commonly called "Spaceguard," discovers these objects, characterizes a subset of them and plots their orbits to determine if any could be potentially hazardous to our planet.

JPL manages the Near-Earth Object Program Office for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., operates the Arecibo Observatory under a cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation in Arlington, Va.

For more information about asteroids and near-Earth objects, visit: http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroidwatch


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "Asteroid to fly by within Moon's orbit." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100408150503.htm>.
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (2010, April 8). Asteroid to fly by within Moon's orbit. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100408150503.htm
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "Asteroid to fly by within Moon's orbit." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100408150503.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

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