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Topic: Toutatis

NASA’s Goldstone Radar tracks Huge Asteroid as it passes by Earth

 

Written by Dr. Tony Phillips
Science at NASA

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – This week, NASA’s Goldstone radar is tracking a large asteroid as it passes by Earth, and obtaining images of unprecedented clarity.

“At closest approach on December 12th, asteroid 4179 Toutatis will be 7 million km away or 18 times farther than the Moon,” says Lance Benner of NASA’s Near Earth Object Program. “There is no danger of a collision with Earth,” but the asteroid will be close enough for radar imaging.

A sampling of Goldstone radar images obtained during the asteroid Toutatis's December 2012 flyby.

A sampling of Goldstone radar images obtained during the asteroid Toutatis’s December 2012 flyby.

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