Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Asteroid Fly-By

Just a quick post today to let y'all know that I'm going up to volunteer at the Vis on Tuesday for the first time as a daytime volunteer. This is because there's an asteroid fly-by happening tomorrow, and we're going to determine if we have any chance to see it. I need to get to bed soon so this post will be short, but basically it's a little asteroid called 2005 YU55 which is about a quarter-mile wide. It'll approach to about 198,000 miles at its closest, a bit closer that the orbit of the moon, at 1:28 PM Hawaiian time (that's 3:28 Pacific, and 6:28 Eastern time). It's only going to be about magnitude 11 even at closest approach, so more than ten times too faint to be seen with the naked eye, plus the fact that the sun will be up won't be helping at all. However, it may be possible to see in the days to come as it appears to move slower as it get further away in a direction almost opposite the sun.

Anyway, need to get some shut-eye now, so I'll write a longer post later with a bit more detail, along with any results we might possibly get.

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