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Asteroid Fly-by
updated: Feb 08, 2013, 1:25 PM

By Edhat Subscriber

2012-DA14 Asteroid fly-by next Friday. Does anyone know if we on the west coast will be able to see it?

http://www.space.com/19686-asteroid-2012-da14-earth-flyby-nasa.html

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 372331 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-08 01:34 PM

Yes, you will need at least a small telescope or some powerful binoculars and know how to use a star chart.

 

 MACPUZL agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-08 01:43 PM

No, because it will be at its closest during daylight for us.

By the time it's dark here, the asteroid will be so far away that it will be magnitude 13, needing at least a 5-inch aperture to have any hope of seeing it.

If you want to try, you'll need to generate an ephemeris from the NASA Solar Systems Dynamics page, with your observing site lat and lon pretty accurate, because the asteroid will be so close that there will be significant parallax from different spots, making star charts virtually useless.

http://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/horizons.cgi?find_body=1&body_group=sb&sstr=2012%20DA14

 

 COMMENT 372336 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-08 01:53 PM

Associated Press: "The asteroid will be invisible to the naked eye and even with binoculars and telescopes will appear as a small point of light. The prime viewing locations will be in Asia, Australia and eastern Europe.

Observers in the U.S. can pretty much forget it. Astronomers using NASA's deep-space antenna in California's Mojave Desert will have to wait eight hours after the closest approach to capture radar images."

 

 MACPUZL agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-08 01:57 PM

There's also enough moonlight that evening to make dim objects pretty difficult. It is the public telescope night at Wesmont, so maybe we'll take a stab at it, but don't expect much. If you come (see the Edhat events calendar for details), you'll at least get to see some other cool stuff, weather permitting.

 

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