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Asteroid 2012 DA14 sequence and Chelyabinsk meteor trajectory

asteroid-2012-da14-and-russian-meteorid

This exceptional sequence made by the Virtual Telescope, shows asteroid 2012 DA14, soon after its close approach at about 27 500 km above the Earth surface.

At the imaging time, it was moving at the amazing rate of 2450"/min (0.7deg/min). The robotic telescope was carefully tuned to track its rapidly changing apparent motion. The asteroid was only 20 degrees above the horizon.

AGI aerospace engineers have used Systems Tool Kit (STK) software to create a simulation based on publically available information showing the trajectory of the Chelyabinsk meteor, as well as the trajectory of asteroid 2012 DA14, which had a close approach same day.

The meteor that exploded over the Urals of central Russia was seen by Eumetsat's Meteosat-9, at the edge of the satellite view. Hundreds of people were reportedly injured as the meteor's massive sonic boom caused widespread damage.

Featured image credit: AGI

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