Asteroid Earth flyby number two

Asteroid 2017 BX is another significant incoming object headed towards the Moon-Earth system next week, the second this month after asteroid 2017 AG13 whizzed by the Earth on 9th January. Passing at a close distance of 0.68 of the Moon distance to the Earth, next week’s asteroid will safely pass the Earth and is a little smaller estimated to be between 6 and 14 meters in diameter. Once again, this asteroid was only discovered days before its closest approach to Earth. The asteroid was discovered at the Pan-STARRS facility, Haleakala on January 20, 2017. The speed of the pass is estimated to be 7.44 km/s so a little slower than asteroid 2017 AG13 however still a difficult target for amateur astronomers to track due to its faint brightness and speed across the sky on the day.

NASA’s JPL interactive orbit diagram



Courtesy of Slooh

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