Near-Earth asteroid 2013 XH22: an amazing image (17 Dec. 2013)
The near-Earth asteroid 2013 XH22 was shared live while it was approaching our planet, last night. Images collected by the Virtual Telescope were visible on the web, in real-time.
Above is a very spectacular image, made with frames collected during the live feed and showing this small, 20-meters asteroid surfing the skies while it was at about 1.25 millions of km from us and approaching.
It is the average of three, 180-seconds exposures, taken with the PlaneWave 17″ robotic unit part of the Virtual Telescope. The robotic system was tracking the fast apparent motion of the minor planet (about 115″/minute), at the imaging time located at 850.000 km from the Earth. The Paramount ME robotic mount used its specific capabilities for tracking fast moving objects. So, asteroid 2013 XH22 appears as a sharp dot of light, while stars are “slipping” on the background.
Support The Virtual Telescope Project!
If everyone reading this right now would donate something, our fundraiser would be done in a few days. Please, donate and receive unique, LIMITED EDITION set of images of the Chinese CZ-5B falling rocket, captured from Rome, images of the International Space Station above Rome and more, specifically made for supporters like you!
donate now (you can adjust the amount later)