Asteroid 2011 MD To Pass Close To Earth This Monday, June 27

By on Jun 25, 2011 in Astronomy, Science Comments

Asteroid 2011 MD, a small asteroid the size of a tour bus will pass by the Earth in an “extremely close” distance on Monday, several astronomy news sites reported on Friday, June 24, 2011.

Reports said that despite its close distance, it poses no danger to Earth. NASA officials reportedly said that the asteroid will be at its closest at a distance of just over 7,500 miles (12,000 kilometers) above Earth’s surface at 1:14pm EDT (17:14 GMT) on June 27, 2011.

LINEAR, a pair of robotic telescopes in New Mexico discovered the asteroid on Wednesday, June 22, 2011, reports said. The asteroid was said to be 29 to 98 feet (9 to 30 meters) wide.

Astronomers at NASA‘s Asteroid Watch program reportedly said that scientists will use the close pass as an opportunity to study it with radar observations.

Below is the trajectory of asteroid 2011 MD courtesy of NASA.

Asteroid 2011 MD Orbit
Trajectory of Asteroid 2011 MD
Credit: NASA

Reports said that the asteroid is expected not to be very bright. It is said to be about 250 times dimmer than the faintest stars visible to the eye without any aid.

“These objects are so small (10 meters) that normally a sizeable telescope is required,” Asteroid Watch scientists were quoted as saying.

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