Questions tagged [asteroids]

Questions regarding relatively small rocky bodies in an orbit around the Sun.

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53 views

Why do most people not know about the visible asteroid that passed by in the early 90's?

My family and I witnessed an asteroid pass by in the very early 90's. It was around Halloween during a costume contest at night. It was very visible with the naked eye. It resembled the moon in size (...
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2019OK energy at impact

The asteroid 2019 OK recently passed at 77.000km of the Earth, with an estimated size of 50-130m. But if this asteroid had crashed onto the Earth, what would have been its kinetic energy on impact? ...
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How well would the Moon protect the Earth from an Asteroid?

Would the Earth fare better if the Moon blocked the meteor, comet, rogue planet, or otherwise rather than a direct impact? At what point would the Moon's debris would be an extinction event? The ...
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What resources do C-Type(Carbonaceous) Asteroids contain?

What resources do C-Type asteroids contain? The research I've done has come up with carbon, but what form is the carbon in? Graphite, diamonds, coal, or some other material?
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Where asteroids disappear

Scientists claim that objects left on the Moon can lie hundreds of years in the same condition like astronaut Charles Duke family photo. Why we don't see remains of asteroids inside or around craters? ...
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What causes these asteroid trails to be so strangely shaped and repeated?

The Phys.org news item Hubble is the ultimate multitasker: Discovering asteroids while it's doing other observations includes the image below. What causes these asteroid trails to be so strangely ...
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How long does it take for an asteroid to get to Earth?

How long does it take an asteroid to get from the asteroid belt, to Earth? I know the asteroids don't go directly from the asteroid belt to Earth, but I know it's not quick, either. The time probably ...
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Has Hubble ever been used to try to image a near Earth asteroid?

This answer points out that the near Earth asteroid Apophis will likely be close to 2 arcseconds in diameter as seen from Earth during its close approach in 2029. I speculate that if the Hubble Space ...
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What's the number density of `Oumuamua like objects?

Recently, the fly-through the Solar system of the inter-stellar object (ISO) `Oumuamua caused quite a stir in the astronomy community. I wonder whether there are reliable estimates for the (local) ...
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What if there was an asteroid belt with the mass of a planet?

In the past, the asteroid belt was thought to be the remains of a shattered planet. Of course, that was all pseudoscience, the mass of the asteroid belt being 4% of the moon. I've been wondering, what ...
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What would you find within a void?

I'm aware that voids are relatively empty regions of the universe, but just how empty can they be? Wikipedia states that voids have 'few or no' galaxies, but I can't find much else. To make my ...
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If a solar system were surrounded by a cloud of debris, is it possible for a planet's orbit to intersect it?

I'm doing research for a story that I'm writing and I'd like some physics advice on whether a hypothetical system of celestial bodies is possible. Suppose the following: A system of planets orbiting ...
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How to check what telescopes were looking at a certain portion of sky at a particular time?

I have some data that I collected from observations at a specific RA, DEC and I am trying to figure out what telescope surveys were looking at that portion of the sky at that particular time? I am ...
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Are there any estimates for the combined mass of all near earth objects (NEOs)?

I tried looking around but couldn't find any sources attempting to answer this particular question. It's obviously impossible to know the exact answer, but all I'm looking for is an estimate. My ...
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A quantitive estimate of the size above which celestial bodies must be near-spherical [duplicate]

Asteroids and smaller celestial objects tend to be odd-shaped, whereas planets are always spherical (or slightly oblate due to their spin). The reason obviously is that for sufficiently large masses/...
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What would happen if asteroid 99942 Apophis collides with the earth?

In the news recently it's been said that in 2029 the asteroid called Apophis, aka 'The God of Chaos', will fly by very close to earth. To quote Geek.com In 2029, a massive asteroid called 99942 ...
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Does any asteroid we have ever seen have a hot core like earth.?

I was wondering if any of the asteroids we have ever seen has a hot core like Earth's. I'm thinking that Earth has a strong gravitational field and so formation would have involved a lot of ...
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At what annual rate are new exoplanets being recognized? How does it compare to new asteroids?

I just read the BBC News article Exoplanet tally set to pass 4,000 mark . It makes me wonder about the annual rate that new exoplanets being recognized, and how it compares to the rate of new ...
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What is the closest an asteroid or comet has passed the Sun and survived?

After SOHO began watching the Sun from space with its coronagraphs 24/7 it was discovered that there are comets passing very close to the Sun quite regularly, and while some are destroyed, some are ...
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What's the soonest Oumuamua could return? [closed]

Oumuamua is apparently a cigar-shaped asteroid that recently passed through the solar system on an unusual orbit, exhibiting unexpected acceleration. Oumuamua is known to have fairly minimal powers ...
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Can the Sun pull an iron asteriods in it's orbit into it? [closed]

Can our Sun's magnetic field strengthen in any way in a short period? Can the Sun pull anything trapped in close orbit around it? What would happen if an object in orbit passes over a sunspot for ...
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How can we be certain that Ryugu is a remnant of the material that did not form planets?

As mentioned here, that Ryugu is a part of the Solar System material that did not get swept into forming a planet. But how can we be sure that it was not created later for example by an asteroid ...
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How many asteroids are named after musicians? Is there a searchable list for this?

Spot checking Wikipedia, Google and JPL's Horizions I found several musicians right away, including Lou Reed, Elvis, Freddy Mercury, and David Bowie. Is there a way to find all of the asteroids that ...
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Do interstellar asteroids decelerate and eventually stop?

I do wonder, do interstellar asteroids eventually stop at one point in space after they gradually decelerate (or) even do they decelerate? Though there is no air like on earth and thus asteroids ...
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What is so special about the Ultima Thule passed by New Horizon spacecraft?

I read that the New Horizon spacecraft passed by the Ultima Thule. I also got to know that it is a flat, snowman-shaped rock. What is so special about it?
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Asteroid identification in fits image

I have a fits image, and I need to identify an asteroid. What characteristics do I look out for?
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Rendering asteroid orientation as seen from Earth

I am writing a program to render an asteroid as seen from various parts of the solar system. My goal is to roughly reproduce the image of Cacus according to information on its DAMIT detail page. ...
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Does the KBO 2014-MU69 have two numbers and entries in asteroid databases? How did it get promoted to Major Body designation?

In this answer I show that the (now pretty famous) Kuiper Belt Object 2014-MU69 has two entries in JPL's ephemeris generating Horizons site; Major Body ...
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Transform asteroid rotation to heliocentric ecliptic coordinates

I'm working with data from the DAMIT database of asteroid shape models. I'm adding them to a visualization in which the sun is at [0, 0, 0] and the X, Y axes constitute the ecliptic plane of the ...
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Do planetary magnetic fields slow the movement of conductive extraplanetary moving objects via induction?

A fixed magnetic field will induce an electrical current in a conductive object moving through the field. The strength of the eddy currents will depend on the shape and composition of the conductor ...
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Do we know if there are asteroids leading or following Earth in Earth's orbit around the Sun?

A search of the Internet is so clouded with discussions about the asteroid belt or asteroids orbiting the planet Earth that I couldn't see an answer to my question. Do we know if there are asteroids ...
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Could stellar occultations be used to survey Kuiper belt objects?

The first hint we had as to the shape of Ultima Thule was via an occultation study using an array of small telescopes. Has anyone investigated the feasibility and effectiveness of conducting a survey ...
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How did Biden become VP? (naming of 2012 VP113)

The Carnegie Science article Solar System's Edge Redefined describes the discovery of the object 2012 VP113. Wikipedia's article 2012 VP113 says: Nickname: 2012 VP113 was abbreviated "VP" and ...
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How do they know how far out Farout is? (2018 VG18)

The Carnegie Science article Discovered: The Most-Distant Solar System Object Ever Observed begins: Washington, DC— A team of astronomers has discovered the most-distant body ever observed in our ...
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Discovery of Near Earth Objects (NEO's)

Near Earth Objects (NEO's) have been mapped by NASA and JPL since 1990's. The graph below shows how many of these potential planet-killers have been found and classified over the years. I am curious ...
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What is this thin, square-ish object on asteroid Bennu? How big is it?

What could this square thing be? Roughly how big is it? From BGR's Our first up-close look at the Bennu asteroid is a messy one: rotated, 2x zoomed, and sharpened. unscientifically:
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A non rotating asteroid of huge mass collides with earth. After the collision, does the length of the day on earth change?

A non rotating asteroid of huge mass collides with earth. After the collision, would the length of the day on earth increase or decrease? Why?
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Why haven't more captured small moons been found?

Shouldn't captured moons have the same size distribution as asteroids? And asteroids are more common the smaller size they are. Moons are likely captured if they are in highly inclined orbits, and ...
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Are Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs) asteroids?

Are Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs) asteroids? Please, base your answer. If possible, give sources. Thanks.
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What were the odds that ʻOumuamua passed so close to the Sun?

ʻOumuamua passed its closest point at about 0.25 UA from the Sun. Has anyone researched what the odds were that the first ever spotted interstellar object passed so close to the Sun? Being the ...
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What would it take to capture a passing asteroid or other celestial body into Earth's orbit?

Every once in a while, we have a celestial body that passes through our solar system. What would be needed to reel one of these in? Not crashing down to Earth, that would be bad, but say into a high ...
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What exactly are the “ν6 secular Sun-Jupiter-Saturn” and the “1:4 Sun-Jupiter” resonances?

In the recent Acta Astronautica article The edge of space: Revisiting the Karman Line, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics astronomer, Space SE contributor and "inverse namesake" of asteroid (...
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Is the passage of three asteroids near Earth today just coincidental?

I just saw in the advertisement-laden tabloid Express that three near-Earth astroids will pass the Earth today: The first of the three, dubbed Asteroid 2018 TU4, will come as close as 0.03637 ...
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What's the composition of Ceres?

Strangely, there isn't a lot of information on Ceres on the internet. I want to know the specific percentages of its composition. Thanks in advance!
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Are there any known asteroids with average density similar to that of Earth's?

In this answer I mention that for very low orbits around spherical bodies, the period tends to scale only as the inverse square root of the density, and not the diameter. For a low orbits where the ...
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Move asteroid away with white color?

If we find asteroid flying towards us, can we change it's direction with white painting? Will the ray from sun do something?
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What cosmic disaster is most likely to happen? [closed]

Of all the different ways that the Earth can be destroyed what ways is the most likely that could happen?
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What is an asteroid called if it is in deep space?

Pretty much every definition I've read about asteroids is something like "Asteroids are rocky worlds revolving around the sun that are too small to be called planets." What would an asteroid be ...
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Accuracy of predicting an asteroid strike in 1987

Good People, I am writing a short story, and I wanted to include a section wherein a family is told that an asteroid is going to strike their home. The thing is, I would like to set the story in 1987,...
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C-Type Asteroids and Carbonaceous Chondrite Meteorites

I was just wondering, what is the relationship between C-type asteroids and carbonaceous chondrite (CC) meteorites? Do CC meteorites come from C-type asteroids?