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Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Apr 8, 2010 3:20:51 GMT -6
Asteroid 2010 GA6 to make a close pass to Earth 08 April 2010
Astronomers have been tracking a 71 foot long asteroid, designated: 2010 GA6 - by the Catalina Sky Survey in Tucson, Az. (Thank goodness for the survey... )
Plotting has determined that it will pass by the Earth at 6:06 pm, Chicago time at a distance of 223,000 miles - closer than the distance to the Moon.
But Asteroid 2010 AL30 came closer - passing within 80,000 miles this past January 2010.
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.
Usually, we get word of asteroid Earth path crossers (Apollo class), after the fact and it's good that the survey is picking these rocks early for advance warning.
Chicago Astronomer Joe Founder, Administrator and Chief Astronomer
Telescope/Observatory Docent Facilitator Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
Astronomy Instructor Instituto Del Progresso/IHSCA
Astronomy Program Instructor British International School of Chicago /Lincoln Park Campus
Resident Astronomer Chicago Park District Nature Oasis/Night Out in the Parks/ 606 Trail