A Car-Sized Asteroid Made the Closest Earth Flyby a Space Rock Has Ever Survived

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    New submitter louisfreeman shares a report from Space.com: A newly discovered car-sized asteroid just made the closest-known flyby to Earth without hitting our planet. On Sunday (Aug. 16), the asteroid, initially labeled ZTF0DxQ and now formally known to astronomers as 2020 QG, swooped by Earth at a mere 1,830 miles (2,950 kilometers) away. That gives 2020 QG the title of closest asteroid flyby ever recorded that didn’t end with the space rock’s demise. What’s slightly concerning is the fact that the flyby wasn’t expected. The Palomar Observatory didn’t detect the zooming asteroid until about six hours after the object’s closest approach. “The asteroid approached undetected from the direction of the sun,” Paul Chodas, the director of NASA’s Center for Near Earth Object Studies, told Business Insider. “We didn’t see it coming.” Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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