2 asteroids just zipped by Earth, and NASA caught footage of the action

by | Jul 5, 2024 | Science

NASA’s Goldstone planetary radar system recently recorded two near-Earth asteroids, 2024 MK and 2011 UL21, flying by our planet. Perhaps a tad alarming, one was only detected 13 days before it safely bypassed Earth, but scientists at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Southern California assure it never posed a threat. Still, the imagery they were able to collect has been extremely informative.”There was no risk of either near-Earth object impacting our planet, but the radar observations taken during these two close approaches will provide valuable practice for planetary defense, as well as information about their sizes, orbits, rotation, surface details and clues as to their composition and formation,” the team wrote in a press release.The Goldstone Solar System Radar is located in the desert near Barstow, California. With its 70-meter-long (230-foot-long) and fully steerable antenna (DSS-14) — the only fully steerable radar in the world for high-resolution ranging and imaging — it provides full-sky coverage and has been used to investigate objects of interest within the solar system for the past three decades.In that time, it has managed to gather invaluable information about other planets, from Mercury to Saturn, and has supported numerous exploratory missions, such as the Mars Exploration Rovers, Cassini’s Saturn expedition, the Hayabusa asteroid explorers, the SOHO sun-watching probe’s recovery, the Lunar Prospector, and the Venus-studying Magellan endeavor.Related: ‘God of Destruction’ asteroid Apophis will come to Earth in 2029 — and it could meet some tiny spacecraftAs was seen this week, it’s also been used to track and study near-Earth asteroids, helping to prevent potential impact hazards and identify targets for future exploration missions. Radar is a powerful tool for studying asteroid properties and orbits — the ground-based station transmits radio waves to the asteroids, then receives back reflected signals that scientists …

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[mwai_chat context=”Let’s have a discussion about this article:nnNASA’s Goldstone planetary radar system recently recorded two near-Earth asteroids, 2024 MK and 2011 UL21, flying by our planet. Perhaps a tad alarming, one was only detected 13 days before it safely bypassed Earth, but scientists at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Southern California assure it never posed a threat. Still, the imagery they were able to collect has been extremely informative.”There was no risk of either near-Earth object impacting our planet, but the radar observations taken during these two close approaches will provide valuable practice for planetary defense, as well as information about their sizes, orbits, rotation, surface details and clues as to their composition and formation,” the team wrote in a press release.The Goldstone Solar System Radar is located in the desert near Barstow, California. With its 70-meter-long (230-foot-long) and fully steerable antenna (DSS-14) — the only fully steerable radar in the world for high-resolution ranging and imaging — it provides full-sky coverage and has been used to investigate objects of interest within the solar system for the past three decades.In that time, it has managed to gather invaluable information about other planets, from Mercury to Saturn, and has supported numerous exploratory missions, such as the Mars Exploration Rovers, Cassini’s Saturn expedition, the Hayabusa asteroid explorers, the SOHO sun-watching probe’s recovery, the Lunar Prospector, and the Venus-studying Magellan endeavor.Related: ‘God of Destruction’ asteroid Apophis will come to Earth in 2029 — and it could meet some tiny spacecraftAs was seen this week, it’s also been used to track and study near-Earth asteroids, helping to prevent potential impact hazards and identify targets for future exploration missions. Radar is a powerful tool for studying asteroid properties and orbits — the ground-based station transmits radio waves to the asteroids, then receives back reflected signals that scientists …nnDiscussion:nn” ai_name=”RocketNews AI: ” start_sentence=”Can I tell you more about this article?” text_input_placeholder=”Type ‘Yes'”]
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