Tags: asteroid 2010 wc9 | close | earth | passes

Asteroid 2010 WC9 Making Among 'Closest' Earth Passes

Image: Asteroid 2010 WC9 Making Among 'Closest' Earth Passes
(Dreamstime)

By    |   Tuesday, 15 May 2018 01:28 PM

Asteroid 2010 WC9 was lost for the last eight years but now the space rock, roughly the size of the Statue of Liberty, has been found just as it was expected to whizz by Earth on Tuesday in what EarthSky is calling "one of the closest approaches ever observed of an asteroid of this size."

Measuring between 197 to 427 feet in diameter, 2010 WC9 was reaching its closest point to earth, roughly 126,000 miles away, at around 6:06 p.m. Eastern Time.

What that means is that the asteroid was passing by Earth at about half the distance between the moon and Earth.

According to Fox News, 2010 WC9 was first spotted in November 2010 by the NASA-backed space project Catalina Sky Survey, but was then lost for several years, only to be rediscovered on May 8.

This is the second asteroid to scrape by Earth in recent weeks.

In May an asteroid as big as a football field, called 2018 GE3, flew by Earth hours after it was first spotted by a NASA-affiliated observatory in Arizona.

A preliminary analysis of the asteroid's orbit showed this was the closest 2018 GE has come to Earth since at least 1930.

And while 2018 GE3 caught star gazers off guard, this time they were prepared as 2010 WC9 made its journey towards Earth.

The asteroid was not be visible to the naked eye but those who do not have telescopes can still get in on the action via Northolt Branch Observatories, which was posting a live broadcast to its Facebook account.

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Asteroid 2010 WC9 was lost for the last eight years but now the space rock, roughly the size of the Statue of Liberty, has been found just as it was expected to whizz by Earth on Tuesday in what EarthSky is calling "one of the closest approaches ever observed of an asteroid of this size."
asteroid 2010 wc9, close, earth, passes
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2018-28-15
Tuesday, 15 May 2018 01:28 PM
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