Potentially Hazardous Asteroid "2012 QG42" to Buzz Earth: 13th/14th Sept 2012





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Published on Aug 31, 2012

UPDATE 14th Sept: See my updated video here: http://youtu.be/fvK4PweGXYo

On the 26th August 2012, a large Near-Earth Object was discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey. The object is classified as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid due to its size (200-500m), and the close proximity of its closest approach to Earth (within 0.019 Astronomical Units).

Slooh.com Member Norm Pritchett made follow-up observations using Slooh's online robotic telescopes shortly after its discovery - these contributed to the initial determination of its orbit.

Slooh Space Camera will be providing free live online coverage of the asteroid's closest approach to Earth on the night of the 13th/14th September 2012.

Closest approach occurs at 05:13UTC - for that time at worldwide locations, see here: http://goo.gl/DVW27

UPDATE 13th September 2012:

The IAU has just finished its General Assembly in Beijing - and they have passed a new resolution regarding Near-Earth Objects and their threat to Earth. I quote from Resolution B3 (on the establishment of an International NEO early warning system):

"...recognising....that there is now ample evidence that the probability of catastrophic impacts of Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) onto the Earth, potentially highly destructive to life, and for humankind in particular, is not negligible and that appropriate actions are being developed to avoid such catastrophes;"

"...that even the impact of small- to moderate-sized objects may represent a great threat to our civilizations and to the international community;"

"...that our knowledge of the number, size, and orbital behaviour of smaller objects is still very limited, thus not allowing any reasonable anticipation on the likelihood of future impacts;"

So there is widespread recognition that these threats are real, and that co-ordinated international action is required to mitigate the risk.


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