Near-Earth asteroid 2012 DA14 to make extremely close approach in February 2013


A small asteroid designated 2012 DA14 will make an extremely close approach on February 15, 2013. It will pass by Earth at a distance of about 27 000 km (17 000 miles/no closer than 0.000181 AU) from the center of the Earth; within about 3.5 Earth radii of the Earth's surface.

This near-Earth asteroid was discovered on February 22, 2012, by LaSagra Observatory in the mountains of Andalusia in southern Spain. Asteroid 2012 DA14 is thought to be about 45 meters in diameter and his estimated mass about 130,000 metric tons.

(Planetary Radio features Jaime Nomen discussing La Sagra's discovery of 2012 DA14. Listen here!)

2012 DA14 asteroid 2013

Its orbit is almost circular but still elliptical enough to pass near Earth two times per year. The preliminary orbit shows that 2012 DA14 has a very Earth-Like orbit with a period of 366 days. On February 16, 2012, it was about 2.5 million km (1.5 million miles) away (about 6 times the distance to the Moon).


The path of near-Earth asteroid 2012 DA14 is seen passing close to Earth on Feb. 15, 2013. (Credit: NASA/NEO)

The Asteroid 2012 DA14 will pass below the distance where many commercial satellites are flying – inside the geosynchronous satellite ring, located about 35 800 km above the equator. The nominal pass will be 0.00023 AU (34 000 km; 21 000 miles) from the center-point of the Earth.

It is expected that the asteroid will travel rapidly from the southern evening sky into the northern morning sky on February 15, 2013. About 4 minutes after its Earth close approach, there is a good chance it will pass into the Earth's shadow for about 18 minutes or so before reappearing from the eclipse. When traveling rapidly into the northern morning sky, 2012 DA14 will quickly fade in brightness.

YouTube video

If the orbit that has been derived from the available data is accurate, during the closest approach, 2012 DA14 will be visible from Europe and Asia as an 6 – 7th magnitude star, crossing the sky from the southwest to the northeast at a speed of almost one Moon diameter per minute. It won't be visible by naked eye, but it is possible that it could be seen by binoculars.

Asteroid 2012 DA14, discovered on February 22, 2012, moved very fast, having just passed relatively close to Earth. It was moving at about 11 arcseconds per minute and had a visual magnitude of 18.8. (Courtesy Jaime Nomen, La Sagra Observatory)


Asteroid 2012 DA14 will pass by Earth at a distance of about 27 000 km (17 000 miles) from the center of the Earth. Just for comparison – 400-meters wide asteroid YU 55  passed 320,000 kilometers (200,000 miles) from Earth on November 8, 2011. Even closer flyby of asteroid 2011 MD last June was closer than DA14 will at a distance of only 12,070 km (7,500 miles). But one thing is certain – it will surely miss us next year.

For now, the orbit of 2012 DA14 is such that it will not crash into Earth for the foreseeable future. It rates 0 (No Hazard) on the Torino scale.

2012 DA14

In this plot, the asteroid is the yellow dot, and Earth is green; the two orbits intersect twice per year. (Credit: Deimos-Space)

With such a close approach to Earth, our planet's gravity will change its future path and rise a chance of future impact.   There is an estimated cumulative 0.033% risk (1 in 3,030) of 2012 DA14 impacting Earth sometime between 2026 and 2069.

Some scientists believe that similar-in-size object hit Tunguska in 1918. If it were to strike the Earth, it is estimated that it would produce the equivalent of 2.4 megatons of TNT. The Tunguska event has been estimated at 3−20 megatons.

Observing 2012 DA14 will provide a good test as we anticipate the 2029 flyby of Apophis, a bigger asteroid (around 270 meters) that is expected to have a very close encounter too, at around 36,000 kilometers.

Asteroid 2012 DA14 is not an impact threat for February 2013

2012 DA14 – Earth Impact Risk Summary

asteroid 2012 SA14

Orbital diagram (Source:NASA/JPL)

Sources: NEO/JPL, JPL Small-Body Data Browser, Planetary Society, Minor Planet Center, ESA


February 15, 2013:

On the day of asteroid 2012 DA14 flyby (some 18 hours before its closest approach to Earth) an asteroid exploded over Russia and Kazakhstan injuring over 1 000 people. Read the full report here:

20m wide asteroid explodes above Russia, over 1 000 people injured

Featured image credit: Andreus Agency/Dreamstime.com

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  1. pdf Version (*^ヮ゚)σ(http://para-site.net/up/data/062.zip)

    What a Harsh Mistress The Moon Is!

    Coincidentally, 2 celestial bodies which has different orbital, come to the Earth, at the same time.
    Coincidentally, the one of the 2 celestial body flyby the Earth, then reported by news.
    Coincidentally, the other of the 2 celestial body dropped down on the Earth, then reported by news.
    Coincidentally, the point which this other of the 2 celestial body dropped down is the neighborhood of a nuclear complex.
    Coincidentally, near the point which this other of the 2 celestial body dropped down,
    Coincidentally, a conference important for the Earth Mankind is held, at the same time.
    ( ´_ゝ`)Well…
    Do you think this is the astronomical probability coincidence?(*´艸`)PuPuPuPuPu~♪

    According to NASA, “We would expect an event of this magnitude to occur once every 100 years on average,”

    Don’t Cabinet members and high government officials who assembled Moscow for G20 (Good Timing♪), feel really depressed like a person in Qi thinking that, if 2012DA14 class meteor drop down on my country?(#`▽´)y-゚゚゚ Ukekekekeke

  2. Erm.. I think i have hust seen this… With my naked eye! Looked up at the sky around 00.23GMT and saw what looked like a trail if fire mive across the sky for ages then fade!

    Most amazing thing ive ever seen!!!



    Do a little History on this one.

    ALL Should Look Up “2012 DA14”.

    This could take out one of more satellites and the junk and debris from the hit could end up taking out many more satellites very soon after that. All the satellite collision probability will go way up if even one is hit. The velocity that the parts would go to would make them missiles that would start targeting a chain reaction this would not be good.

    Most all will be watching this one and pray it goes by us without a hit. Every Scientist alive will be watching this event. Many will be in Florida for a very special viewing of the once in a Lifetime Event. Professors, Scientist, World Leaders, Ham Radio Operators and Every Astronomer will have its eyes on This Event, along with almost every TV set on Earth.

    “2012 DA14” goes by Earth twice a year and there is no way anyone for sure, can tell how close the second pass will be till it passes by the Moon and Earth and the GRAVITATIONAL FORCE effect that it will have on this Asteroid.

    They may come close but this one is already coming very close to begin with. Too close this time or on its second or 3rd pass? Ad a Meteor Shower like the 13 and 14 of December of 2012, it might go through or bump into one of them? Or all the other more then 20,00 pieces of orbital debris like Spent Rocket Boosters left in space that can no longer be moved by a control center on Earth. Or add a Solar Flare. Or a Comet ISON or its tail debris of millions of rocks of all sizes. Not to for get the 30,000+ pieces of space junk left from China in 2007 from showing the world it could shoot a decommissioned weather satellite in Space. Now add Asteroid 2013 BV15 into this on the 13 &14 of Feb 2013..

    Feb will have 12 of them from the 12 to the 16.

    If a big enough Asteroid were to slam into the moon in the night sky you would think the sun was coming up early only it would be 5 to 7 times as bright. From The Sun’s Rays Reflection on all the Debris Field.

    2012 XM16, 2012 XM55, 2012 XP55, THERE ARE OVER 25 found just in the year 2012 that are part of the Near Earth Object Program that will come close to Earth from now till 2012 DA14 comes, Feb 14 – 16, 2013.

    You do not want to know how many are on the “PLANETARY DEFENSE” list.
    The PLANETARY DEFENSE is not to protect Earth from men from Mars.
    It is for all mankind with most all Nation in on it to stop if can most all collision with EARTH from a ASTEROID IMPACT. It is if you will a AVOIDANCE SHIELD. “N.E.O.S. Near Earth Object Shield”.

    If only one were to hit or IMPACT EARTH on land get ready for a winter you will never forget. The winter from 1883 -1884 KRAKATOA you will think was a little pebble, and now the stone comes. Krakatoa was a great mountain till it erupted with fire and a blast heard thousands of miles away that cast that Great Mountain into the sea. The Shock Waves were felt around the Globe. The sea was full of Bodies from the Tsunamis more then 35,000 of them, the sea stayed red for weeks. 1884 was a year without a summer as the year 1816 was and many world wide Froze to Death.

    A Shock Wave was felt in England from a Event about 7:15 to 7:20 A.M. Siberia time in the morning in June of the year 1908 high in the sky above the Forest in the remote wilderness of Tunguska Siberia heard an explosion that laid flat more than 800 square miles of the forest with all the trees pointing away from the center of the blast with most all the trees laying on their side. Some trees that were right below the blast were still there looking like telephone poles with no bark or branches left on them. This Asteroid did not even hit the Ground and this is known by most as the TUNGUSKA EVENT. For all that lived there it was WORMWOOD Rev 8:11 the wood became full of worms and the rivers water no longer sweet and undrinkable.

    If a Meteor Shower is big enough you might think all the Stars are falling from Heaven.

    About one every 100 years makes it into the Earth’s Atmosphere big enough for all to take note. Some make it to the surface the signs are all over the Planet and moon from the ones that have.

    If you need a visual sign of a collided impact with a planet look to

    “SHOEMAKER – LEVY 9” July 1994.

    You Need More Look up “PROJECT WORMWOOD” Revelations 8: 10 – 11 based on the “TUNGUSKA EVENT” 1908

    MOSCOW Russia is now saying it will use missiles to intercept Asteroid if need be.

    Better to be safe then sorry.


    Read your Bible
    While you still can,
    and May our Lord GOD Bless all that do so.
    John 14 : 6
    Luke 13 : 27
    Matthew 7 : 20 – 27

    Matthew 12:39

    Matthew 24:3 – 14

    The Lord’s Little Helper.
    Paul Felix Schott.

    December 2013 the Heavens above COMET “C/2012 S1”, “ISON”.

    The day will come when

    ALL ON EARTH WILL SEE THIS NO MATTER WHERE YOU ARE. the night side of earth will become day and and day will be blinding bright. The Bow Shock from the Photo Electric Effect from the Sun’s Solar Wind will really be something.

    Shortly there after you will think the stars are falling from the Heavens,

    REV 6:13,

    REV 16:21

    most will be between 60 to 80 pounds that will make it to the ground surface. Nonstop 12 to 14 hours at a time for two days.

    Help others in are Lord’s name Jesus Christ help bring all to know him while you still can.
    Three kings that were wise men once flowed a star with a long tail 2,000 years ago. That lead them to Jesus Christ wise men still look to and hear are Lord Jesus Christ.

  4. Could this be the harbinger of the rapture? Could those under the locus of maximum gravitational attraction could be sucked off the planet. In addition, if this astrodial body has significant iron content will it, generate large currents within itself as it passes thru the earths magnetic field creating its own magnetic field by virtue of the eddy currents circulating in it that react in turn with systems here on earth? These are truly interesting times. I can’t wait for the 15th.

  5. Is the Horizons/JPL video accurate with reference to the earth’s rotational position?

    Will 2012 DA 14 be moving southwest to the northeast from Antarctica, over India(roughly) where it starts to leave the close earth area?

  6. NASA’S Concern, about informing that it will not strike earth or anything, is proof of their knowledge that it is a possibility of 98 % that it will be colliding with either Earth, the Moon or some of our satellites. information on ufo’s re withheld, but this DA14 is worth checking and answering to prevent any chaos !

    Crappy Moon photos equals crappy information regarding DA14. Sorry NASA I do not believe you !

    1. YES it will be, but it will be moving 2 times the moons diameter so it will be really hard to track. Only the more advance astronomers with a normal telescope will be able to track it because they have more experience tracking things in the night sky. i never said you couldn’t try so give it your best shot good luck.

  7. I understand that it is stated above that 2012 DA14 will not impact earth on Feb of 2013. My question is, why do the astronomical units move into the negative on Feb 16 2013 if there is to be no collision? Thank you for taking time to read this,
    – Joseph R. Walter

      1. Oh come on now, if the asteroid was to hit earth, they would either say so, or say nothing at all (in other words, we would have never heard about Asteroid 2012-DA14 as it’s presence would have been quietly censored and we wouldn’t be here talking about it.)

    1. It has to do with the equator, as an object moves toward it (in space), it’s measured in positive, as an object moves away from the equator (again in space) the measurement goes negative. Simply towards earth + away – .

  8. It is good that the asteroid will not hit us next month but the fact that it is in a really close earth pattern orbit brings up a a lot of questions- one of them being where did this bit of flotsam come from and how many times has it buzzed us? Is this the remnant of a long ago collision to have such a near orbit pattern similar to earth’s with just a slightly different plane? Was there more to this thing in the wayback that bumped the earth once and made us a moon? According to its orbit DA14 has been around forever. If it swings by twice a year, then its other visitation must happen in August each year.

  9. The likelihood of it striking a satellite directly is pretty slim, but just so long as Asteroid 2012 DA14 doesn’t clip the moon on the way in, we’re probably OK. — wouldn’t want to think about tons of lunar gravel and other debris raining down into earth orbit as we already have too much space debris to contend with as it is.

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