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Fascinating images captured by a telescope reveal a mile-wide asteroid

Daily Mail - Science & tech

The blurry picture of the binary object known as 1999 Asteroid KW4 was captured by telescope on May 25th at a distance of some 3.2 million miles (5.1m km) The image, revealed by the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope (VLT), is sharp enough that we can see the two distinct objects. Asteroid 1999 KW4 is not one but two objects - a larger space rock measuring about 0.8 miles (1.3 km) across and a small companion that orbits it. The speed which the double asteroids, which are separated by around 1.6 miles (2.6 km), were moving at made observing it exceptionally challenging, researchers say. Fascinating images show a recent close encounter with a rare double asteroid as it hurtles past Earth at 43,000 mph. The picture of the binary object known as 1999 Asteroid KW4 were captured by telescope on May 25th.


Nasa's spacecraft made to deflect asteroids has entered final stages

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Nasa's plans to launch a spacecraft capable of crashing into an asteroid to knock it off its collision course with Earth has now entered the final stages. The space agency is set to fire its Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) system, which could one-day be called upon to save the planet, into space by 2020. DART is set to target the binary asteroid Didymos to test the system, following approval from Nasa late last month. Although the egg-shaped target, also known as'Didymoon', is only 160 metres (525ft) across, the test will highlight whether the technique cold be used to deflect a much larger asteroid that threatens to wipe out human civilisation. The joint US-European Aida (Asteroid Deflection & Assessment) mission will crash a probe into the smaller of a pair of binary asteroids to see if the object's path can be altered The DART system is being designed, built and managed by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland.


Asteroid Passes By Our Planet Six Times Closer Than The Moon

International Business Times

An asteroid the size of a truck zoomed past Earth six times closer than the moon, according to a CNET report. The object, about 15 to 32.8 feet in length, the made the closest pass-by Earth than any other asteroid since last September. Asteroids passing near our planet are tricky to spot, especially the smaller ones. That's what happened with this asteroid, 2017 BH30, discovered Sunday by the University of Arizona's Catalina Sky Survey just hours before passing by Earth at a strikingly-close distance -- about 40,000 miles away. The asteroid was almost as close as satellites in geosynchronous orbit, which help with weather monitoring and forecasting.


Huge asteroid that hit the moon may be preserved below the surface

New Scientist

At the south pole of the moon is a giant crater called the South Pole-Aitken Basin, about 2500 kilometres across. It is thought to have been created by a large asteroid striking the moon 4 billion years ago and is among the largest craters in the solar system. Now researchers say the remains of that asteroid may have been found under the lunar surface.


We've spotted a strange asteroid that's spinning itself to pieces

New Scientist

A small asteroid has been throwing off rocks for at least 6 years, the most activity we've ever seen from a rock of its type.