Recently discovered asteroid passes very near Earth

May 29, 2012
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Astronomers recently discovered a new asteroid as it passed surprisingly close to the earth this week. The asteroid was dubbed 2012 KT42 and passed a mere 14,000 km above the planet's surface. That was close enough to cause damage to some satellites, but no damage occurred.

The asteroid passed through the Clark Belt of geosynchronous satellites making it a very near miss in the cosmic scheme of things. The asteroid wasn't large about 3 m wide, but came so close to the earth that ranks in the list of the 10 closest asteroid passes ever recorded. The 3 m wide asteroid is the sixth closest near miss ever.

The asteroid was so small that it couldn't be seen with the naked eye. Had the asteroid actually hit the earth, scientists say it was too small to cause significant damage. Chances are had the asteroid entered the Earth's atmosphere, it would have disintegrated almost entirely in the upper atmosphere according to astronomers.

[via NDTV]


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