This NASA diagram depicts the passage of asteroid 2012 DA14 through the Earth-moon system on Feb. 15, 2013.
NASA scientists will discuss the upcoming close Earth flyby of the mid-size asteroid 2012 DA14 today (Feb. 7), and you can follow the presentation live online.
Space agency scientists will hold a teleconference on asteroid 2012 DA14 at 2 p.m. EST (1900 GMT) to review the details (and dispel myths) of the asteroid's extremely close encounter with Earth next week on Friday, Feb. 15. The asteroid will approach within 17,200 miles of Earth during the flyby — 5,000 miles closer that communications satellites in geosynchronous orbits — but poses no risk of impact.
You can watch the asteroid 2012 DA14 webcast on SPACE.com here courtesy of NASA's Ustream feed.
Asteroid 2012 DA14 was discovered last year and is about 150 feet (45 meters) across. That makes it about half the size of a football field, and about the same size as the space rock that exploded over Siberia, Russia, during the 1908 Tunguska event. [Asteroid 2012 DA14 Photos: Earth Flyby of Feb. 15]
NASA scientists stress, however, that asteroid 2012 DA14 will not hit Earth.
"The flyby creates a unique opportunity for researchers to observe and learn more about asteroids," NASA officials said in an announcement.
Speaking in today's teleconference will be:
- Timothy Spahr, director, Minor Planet Center, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Mass.
- Donald Yeomans, manager, NEO Office, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
- Amy Mainzer, principal investigator, NEOWISE observatory, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
- Edward Beshore, deputy principal investigator, Origins-Spectral Interpretation-Resource Identification-Security-Regolith Explorer Asteroid Sample Return Mission, University of Arizona, Tucson
Audio of the teleconference will be streamed live at:
Related images will be available at the start of the teleconference at:
You can follow SPACE.com's complete coverage of the asteroid 2012 DA14 flyby here: