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Asteroid 2012 DA14 Photos: Earth Flyby of Feb. 15, 2013

Asteroid and Earth Orbits Intersect

Deimos-Space

In this plot, the asteroid is the yellow dot, and Earth is green; the two orbits intersect twice per year. A preliminary orbit calculation shows that 2012 DA14 has a very Earth-like orbit with a period of 366.24 days, just one more day than our terrestrial year, and it ‘jumps’ inside and outside of the path of Earth two times per year.

Asteroid 2012 DA14 Flyby Timing

NASA/JPL

This NASA chart depicts asteroid 2012 DA14's position and times during its Feb. 15, 2013 flyby of Earth. The asteroid will approach within 17,200 miles of Earth.

Yarkovsky Effect Diagram

Alexandra Bolling, NRAO/AUI/NSF

This diagram shows how the Yarkovsky Effect slows an asteroid's orbital motion; opposite rotation direction would speed up the orbital motion. Astronomers around the world are preparing to study the close approach of asteroid 2012 DA14 on Feb. 15, 2013.

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