NEO (Near Earth Object) Asteroid 2014 DX 110 will pass by planet Earth tonight Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at an astounding 14.8 kilometers per hour at a distance of 216,000 miles (347,618 km). Rest assured, the almost 30 meter in diameter Apollo-class asteroid poses no threat to our galactic neighborhood, but, interestingly, it is listed on NASA’s risk page for a 1:10,000,000 chance of a 3-4-2046 collision with Earth. It has an orbital period of 1192 days (about 3.25 years), and is approaching us from the south.
Upon further study of 2014 DX 110, we have learned of its return to our terrestrial neighborhood about every 13 years throughout the 21st century.
PanSTARRS, The Catalina Sky Survey, and The B612 Foundation’s asteroid hunting Sentinel space telescope, set for launch as early as 2017, are among the few working to identify threatening space. The hope is to learn more about these spatial bodies in order to develop methods of nudging them out of Earth’s path in the future.
Thanks to the wonderful people at the Virtual Telescope Project, you can watch the passage of 2014 DX 110 as it journeys through our Earth-Moon system: http://www.virtualtelescope.eu/webtv