Getting Closer: Images, Video of Asteroid 2011 MD


Accomplished amateur astronomer and blogger Peter Lake, a.k.a “AstroSwanny” from Australia captured some of the first images of what will be a very close pass of Earth by asteroid 2011 MD. He actually took the image at 07:00 UTC on June 26th with a 20 inch telescope in New Mexico controlled via his iPhone, through the Global Rent-A-Scope program. Ahh, the wonders of technology! As Peter says, “Its not every day, that an asteroid misses by less than 3-5 earth Radii.”

The asteroid, which was only detected last week, is about 25 to 55 feet (8 to 18 m) across, is expected to pass less than 8,000 miles above Earth’s surface around 1 p.m. EDT (17:00 UT) on Monday, June 27th. The time of closest approach will be observable from South Africa and parts of Antarctica, but the approach will be visible across Australia, New Zealand, southern and eastern Asia, and the western Pacific.

Below is a video he compiled of the his observations of the pass, and used ten 120-second images for the video.

Peter also noted that “Its close approach is being followed with great interest, more for honing the skills and techniques of the Minor Planet Center and the network of asteroid hunting astronomers, rather than because it poses any real danger.”

Thanks to Peter and his Aartscope Blog for sharing these views with Universe Today.

9 Replies to “Getting Closer: Images, Video of Asteroid 2011 MD”

  1. I believe that this asteroid will fully implode when it reaches the outside layer. I can see that these astronomers see this as the galaxy reaches out to torch-er this small vision.
    I wonder why the earth has so many tactical oversights. I wonder why we are all subject to the visualization that permits such understanding do you think we are destined to be astronomers? Do you think we can capture this as it passes over our large planet? we are only one of several different universes that have given up the balance in which we have survived. we are all just waiting to experience the true meaning of the word life. you see outside of this galaxy lye’s a greater truth that we are unaware of Outside the lunar capsule that stands between the truth and the lies are others that have been taken from this planet and the truth will arise when the other side forces it’s way into this galaxy. We will know that others have begun their walk by the way this earth will sound in the beginning of the planetary alignment

      1. Yikes. On a better note, the comments section has been getting easier to maintain with fewer nutcakes!

        However these may be premature celebrations. We haven’t burned through Astrologers, medical quackery, or the occult/religion articles since Disqus came online.

      2. I suppose it’s the price we all have to pay for the privilege of having an edit facility. *Sigh*

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