Latest Asteroid Stories

OSIRIS-Rex To Study Asteroid Yarkovsky Effect
2013-02-08 18:46:31

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online NASA will be launching a new mission in 2016 to help estimate what kind of impact an asteroid would make if it struck Earth. The OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, and Regolith Explorer) mission will travel to a potentially hazardous asteroid (PHA), and make measurements of the Yarkovsky effect. This effect is a push on an asteroid that happens when it is warmed up by the sun and...

Real-Time Video Of Asteroid 2012 DA14 Offered By Clay Center Observatory
2013-02-06 10:22:22

Clay Center Observatory When a small asteroid brushes within 18,000 miles of Earth in 10 days, the news media and public will be able to watch the celestial near-miss as it happens. On Friday, February 15th, weather permitting, real-time high-definition video from the Clay Center Observatory will be available from 6 p.m. EST until 4 a.m. the next morning (3 p.m. to 1 a.m. PST). The video feed can be freely accessed worldwide via the observatory´s Ustream channel. A countdown...

Small Asteroid Will Pass By Earth Safely
2013-02-04 08:30:02

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory The small near-Earth asteroid 2012 DA14 will pass very close to Earth on February 15, so close that it will pass inside the ring of geosynchronous weather and communications satellites. NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office can accurately predict the asteroid's path with the observations obtained, and it is therefore known that there is no chance that the asteroid might be on a collision course with Earth. Nevertheless, the flyby will provide a unique...

Large Asteroid Will Make Earth Flyby Next Month
2013-01-29 12:55:40

[Watch Video: Record-Setting Asteroid Flyby] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online A record-setting asteroid about the size of half a football field will be making a close flyby to Earth just after Valentine's Day. Although there is no danger of a collision, the asteroid, 2012 DA14, will still be making a record-setting close approach, according to NASA. "Since regular sky surveys began in the 1990s, we've never seen an object this big get so close to Earth," Don...

Apophis Won’t Hit Earth In 2036
2013-01-13 08:33:31

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports — Your Universe Online There is a less than one-in-a-million chance that a massive asteroid, approximately as wide as three American football fields, will collide with Earth in 2036, NASA officials confirmed on Wednesday. According to MSNBC.com´s Alan Boyle, the “all-clear” was sounded by the US space agency after asteroid Apophis came within nine million miles of our planet. In fact, officials with NASA´s...

Herschel Observed Asteroid Apophis Over The Weekend
2013-01-09 14:28:25

ESA ESA´s Herschel space observatory made new observations of asteroid Apophis as it approached Earth this weekend. The data shows the asteroid to be bigger than first estimated, and less reflective. Catalogued as asteroid (99942) Apophis (previously 2004 MN4), it is often nicknamed ℠the doomsday asteroid´ in popular media, after initial observations made after its discovery in 2004 gave it a 2.7% chance of striking Earth in April 2029. With additional data, however,...

Asteroid Apophis To Swing By Earth This Week
2013-01-09 05:27:01

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Asteroid 99942, named Apophis after an ancient Egyptian mythological demon, will be whizzing by Earth this week. Apophis is a near-Earth asteroid with an estimated diameter of approximately three football fields — over 880 feet. The Slooh Space Camera will cover it's near approach on Wednesday, January 9th, 2013. The public can watch several live shows — available on PC, iPhone and Android devices - on Slooh.com starting...

Exocomets Are As Common As Exoplanets
2013-01-08 06:41:37

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A beautiful byproduct of our solar system's formation, comets trailing wispy tails across the night sky are icy leftovers from 4.6 billion years ago when the planets coalesced from rocky rubble. Six likely comets around distant stars were recently discovered by astronomers at the University of California, Berkeley and Clarion University suggesting that comets — dubbed "exocomets" — are just as common in other stellar...

Dawn Has Vesta's Dark Materials In View
2013-01-03 12:54:32

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory A new study of images from NASA's Dawn mission examines remarkable, dark-as-coal material that speckles the surface of the giant asteroid Vesta. Scientists are using the images, taken by Dawn's framing camera, to understand the impact environment early in Vesta's evolution. In the most comprehensive analysis of the dark material to date, Dawn scientists describe how this carbon-rich material tends to appear around the edges of two giant impact basins in...

Massive Asteroid Will Not Strike Earth In 2040
2012-12-23 05:40:35

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online A 140 meter diameter asteroid experts once believed had a one in 500 chance of striking the earth no longer presents a significant impact risk, NASA officials have confirmed. Previously, orbital uncertainties meant there could have been a 0.2-percent chance that asteroid 2011 AG5 would collide with the planet in February 2040, prompting the scientific community -- including David Tholen, Richard Wainscoat and Marco Micheli of the...

Latest Asteroid Reference Libraries

2009-04-28 17:17:08

Johann Daniel Titius was born on January 2, 1729 in Konitz, Royal Prussia. He was a professor at Wittenberg. He is most famous for the Titius-Bode law, which helped him find the existence of a minor planet at 2.8 AU from the sun in 1766. The planet was later named Ceres. Titius died in Wittenberg on December 11, 1796. To his honor, the Titius asteroid in 1998 and the Titius lunar crater are named after him.

2004-10-19 04:45:44

Lagrangian Point -- In Lagrangian mechanics, a Lagrangian point (or L-point) is one of five positions in space where the gravitational fields of two bodies of substantial but differing mass combine to form a point at which a third body of negligible mass would be stationary relative to the two bodies. Bodies at the L-point will not move relative to the parent bodies if they are not perturbed by other gravitational forces. They are sometimes also referred to as libration points. The...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Planet -- A planet is a body of considerable mass that orbits a star and that doesn't produce energy through nuclear fusion. Until recently, only nine were known (all of them in our own Solar system). As of the end of 2002 over 100 are known, with all of the new discoveries being extrasolar planets. Astronomers often call asteroids minor planets, and call the larger planetary bodies (those which are commonly called planets) major planets. Planets within the solar system can be...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Asteroid -- An asteroid, also called a minor planet or planetoid, is a member of a group of small, planet-like bodies that are part of our solar system. They are believed to be remnants of the interstellar clouds, nebula, that were not incorporated into planets during the formation of the solar system. The largest asteroid in the inner solar system is Ceres with a diameter of 1003 km. It also was the first to be discovered, by Giuseppe Piazzi on January 1, 1801. Nowadays, over 9000...

Solar System
2012-10-22 06:09:41

The Solar System refers to the area in space that is dominated by our own Sun. It is comprised of the Sun and its associated astronomical objects that are held in its gravitational orbit. The Solar System was formed as a result of the collapse of a giant molecular cloud approximately 4.6 billion years ago. The mass of this system is located almost entirely in the Sun. Apart from the Sun, a high percentage of the remainder of the system’s mass is located in the eight solitary planets that...

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Word of the Day
  • The unit of magnetic flux density in the International System of Units, equal to the magnitude of the magnetic field vector necessary to produce a force of one newton on a charge of one coulomb moving perpendicular to the direction of the magnetic field vector with a velocity of one meter per second. It is equivalent to one weber per square meter.
This word is named for Nikola Tesla, the inventor, engineer, and futurist.