Asteroid to shave past Earth inside Moon orbit: ESA

Paris (AFP) – An asteroid the size of a house will shave past Earth at a distance of some 44,000 kilometres (27,300 miles) in October, inside the Moon’s orbit, astronomers said Thursday.

The space rock will zoom by at an eighth of the distance from the Earth to the Moon — far enough to just miss our geostationary satellites orbiting at about 36,000 kilometres, according to the European Space Agency (ESA).

“It will not hit the Earth,” said Detlef Koschny of ESA’s “Near Earth Objects” research team. “That’s the most important thing to say.”

The asteroid, dubbed TC4, first flitted past our planet in October 2012 — then at about double the distance before disappearing. It is about 15-30 metres (49-98 feet) long.

Scientists expected the asteroid to return for a near-Earth rendezvous this year, but did not know how far.

Source: Asteroid to shave past Earth inside Moon orbit: ESA

Advertisements
Standard

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s