Asteroid to Pass Earth on 27 January

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Look up to the skies tomorrow night and you just might be able to spot an asteroid!

According to the New Straits Times, asteroid 2004 BL86 measuring 500 metres in diameter will pass Earth tomorrow, January 27, at 12.20am. This asteroid passes near Earth every 200 years and was discovered via telescope at the Lincoln Near-Earth Asteroid Research (LINEAR) in White Sands, New Mexico, on January 30, 2004.

The National Space Agency (Angkasa) said that the asteroid will be closest to Earth on the 27 of January at a distance of about 1.2 million kilometres or about three times the distance from Earth to the moon.

According to the statement by Angkasa, “Asteroid 2004 BL86 is expected to reach a visual magnitude of nine and orbit around the Sun at a speed of 56,420km per hour on Jan 26 and 27.

“At this position, it seems to be moving in front of the stars and can only be seen through a telescope or high-powered binoculars.”

Not to worry though as the asteroid will not cause any harm to Earth.

If you are interested in catching a glimpse of this asteroid, the Langkawi National Observatory (ONL) and Angkasa will carry out observation on Asteroid 2004 BL86 on 27 January. Anyone with a telescope is encouraged to share photos on Angkasa’s Facebook and Twitter with the hash tag #ASTEROID2004BL86Malaysia.

For enquiries, contact ONL at 04-966 8870 or the National Planetarium at 03-2273 4303, or e-mail [email protected]/ [email protected].

Story from: New Straits Times


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