The Close approach of Asteroid 2011 MD

2011 MD is a small asteroid of about 5 to 10 metres which will pass us on June 27 UT time….

Yes this will be a close asteroid to Earth and we have heard that it will be around 12,000km from Earth when it passes.

We actually calculate it to be 18,000km based on the data for the asteroid yesterday.

Since geostationery satellites are in an orbit 36,000 km above Earth, you can tell that there is a small chance that one satellite may get in the way of the asteroid…or suffer a glancing blow.
But we don’t expect it to happen as we would have more chance of winning the lotteries than see an asteroid impact a satellite. The chance of a satellite being in the wrong place at the wrong time is very slim indeed.

As the asteroid approaches Earth it will be influenced by Earth’s gravity and sharply swing around Earth’s atmosphere and slingshot away from Earth ,

Now some people will worry about what happens if MD 2011 gets to close to us and enters our atmosphere.

Well the great thing about our atmosphere is that it is our shield from incoming space objects. Because MD 2011 is only 5 to 10 metres in size, it would burn up in our atmosphere in a brillaint fireball…… the color of the fireball depending on if the asteroid is made up of mostly metal or rock.

But at this stage, the asteroid is not expected to enter our atmosphere at all.

The closest asteroid to miss Earth was one back in February which was the size of an armchair and passed 5479 kn from Earth.

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~ by sydneystargazers on June 24, 2011.

5 Responses to “The Close approach of Asteroid 2011 MD”

  1. Thanks for that. You guys are great.

  2. What an amazing fireshow we might get. Hope the guys in the space station as Safe !

  3. I have an approx time of 0930 EDT closest approach and 7000miles out…

  4. I see they almost evacuated the space station!!!!!!!!!!! A near miss by 250m . However we are told this was just a piece of Debris

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