On Thursday, Jan. 26, a small near-Earth asteroid could have a really shut encounter with our planet. Designated 2023 BU, the asteroid will zoom over the southern tip of South America at about 4:27 p.m. PST (7:27 p.m. EST) solely 2,200 miles (3,600 kilometers) above the planet’s floor and nicely inside the orbit of geosynchronous satellites.
There isn’t any danger of the asteroid impacting Earth. However even when it did, this small asteroid – estimated to be 11.5 to twenty-eight toes (3.5 to eight.5 meters) throughout – would flip right into a fireball and largely disintegrate harmlessly within the environment, with a few of the greater particles doubtlessly falling as small meteorites.
The asteroid was found by beginner astronomer Gennadiy Borisov, discoverer of the interstellar comet 2I/Borisov, from his MARGO observatory in Nauchnyi, Crimea, on Saturday, Jan. 21. Extra observations had been reported to the Minor Planet Heart (MPC) – the internationally acknowledged clearinghouse for the place measurements of small celestial our bodies – and the information was then robotically posted to the Near-Earth Object Confirmation Page. After ample observations had been collected, the MPC announced the discovery. Inside three days, quite a lot of observatories all over the world had made dozens of observations, serving to astronomers higher refine 2023 BU’s orbit.