Comet Or Asteroid? Hubble Discovers Unique Solar System Object

The Hubble Space Telescope is always up to something. Now, a German-led group of astronomers have observed a one-of-a-kind object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Scratch that. Two-of-one-kind: a pair of asteroids orbiting each other that show comet-like features including a bright coma and a long tail. It’s the first known binary asteroid also…
Read More

See Florence, One Of The Largest Near-Earth Asteroids, Zip By Earth

We have a wonderful opportunity in the coming week to see 3122 Florence, a 2.7-mile-wide (4 km) asteroid, safely pass about 4.4 million miles (7 million km) from Earth. The fun begins tonight through early next week. Normally, these guys are tiny and faint and require a lot of skill and an 8-inch or larger scope…
Read More

Asteroid 2014 JO25 Echoes Back Its Secrets

Remember our not-so-little friend asteroid 2014 JO25? On April 19, it approached within 4.6 lunar distances (1.1 million miles) of Earth, the closest an asteroid at least 600 meters (1,968 feet) in size has come since 2004. The flyby provided the perfect opportunity for astronomers to study the physical properties of the asteroid and make images…
Read More

The Face Of Earth-Approacher 2014 JO25 / Sun Blows Off Some ‘Steam’

Tonight, we finally get a chance to see Earth-approaching asteroid 2014 JO25 canter across the sky a day hours after its closest approach to Earth. You’ll need a 3 or 4-inch telescope to find and track it, and I hope you do. Unfortunately, my skies will be cloudy, so if you see this giant hurtling rock, please…
Read More

See A Potentially Hazardous Asteroid Zip By Earth Wednesday

Astronomers are constantly on the lookout for slippery asteroids and comets passing through Earth’s neighborhood. Thanks to their efforts, we know of at least 16,000 NEOs or Near-Earth Objects, the majority of which are asteroids. Of that number about 1,800 are potentially hazardous. One of them, 2014 JO25, will be speeding by our planet Wednesday.…
Read More