Science

Bombay students discover closest asteroid flyby of Earth ever recorded, expert confirm

Bombay students discover closest asteroid flyby of Earth ever recorded, expert confirm”

Dubbed "2020 QG", the asteroid is the closest known space rock to fly by Earth without impacting it. Two students of IIT Mumbai, Kunal Deshmukh and Kirti Sharma, caught the senses of scientists when they discovered this asteroid. This distance will only pass by Earth's proximity, and the probability of the asteroid to collide or enter the planet's atmosphere is at 0.41 percent or 1 in 240 chances. Chen-Yen Hsu, from National Central University in Taiwan, was also the designated scanner on Sunday.

It will come after a auto-sized asteroid narrowly skipped the Earth last weekend.

NASA now monitors the trajectory of a planetoid boulder initially discovered in 2018 that will make a visit close to the planet's proximity, a day before the 2020 U.S. Presidential Elections, on November 2. A student in India first noticed the space rock and alerted researchers at the Zwicky Transient Facility at Caltech's Palomar Observatory in California, according to SyFy Wire.

They reported five "streaks" in the data as potential asteroids.

As part of a NASA-funded programme, ZTF team members search for near-Earth asteroids.

More news: What We Know About the 2020-21 NBA Season

"The data looked like all other Near Earth Asteroids we have seen so far", said Deshmukh, 20, from Pune, who is a final year student in the Department of Metallurgy and Materials Science, IIT-Bombay. The most closely followed record before this was the asteroid 2011 CQ1. Astronomers at institutes like the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies, the Catalina Sky Survey, and the International Astronomical Union Minor Planet Center are keeping an eye out for potentially hazardous objects that could one day cross paths with Earth. The discovery has now been verified by observers.

The Center for Near-Earth Object studies from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory discovered the asteroid's nearby journey.

This illustration shows asteroid 2020 QG's trajectory bending during its close approach to Earth.

"The asteroid flew close enough to the Earth, causing the panet's gravity to change its orbit significantly", said ZTF co-investigator Tom Prince, the Ira S. Bowen Professor of Physics at Caltech and a senior research scientist at JPL, which Caltech manages for NASA.

Don't lose too much sleep over asteroids like 2020 QG.



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