Near-Earth asteroid 2020 GH2 very close encounter: an image – 12 Apr. 2020
Tomorrow, 15 Apr. 2020, the near-Earth asteroid 2020 GH2 will have a very close, but safe encounter with our planet, coming as close as about 360.000 km, closer than our Moon. Our robotic system captured this spectacular image.
The image above comes from the average of two, 450-seconds exposures, remotely taken with the “Elena” (PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E) robotic unit available at Virtual Telescope. The telescope tracked the fast apparent motion of the asteroid, this is why stars show as long trails, while the asteroid looks like a sharp dot of light in the center of the image, marked by an arrow. This is an incredibly capture, as the hardware tracked this moving target to perfection for a long time.
At the imaging time, 2020 GH2 was at about 1.9 millions of km from the Earth and it was on its way approaching us. It was discovered by the Mt. Lemmon survey early on 11 Apr. 2020.
This 13-30 meters large asteroid reached its minimum distance (about 360.000 km) from us on 15 Apr. 2020, at 12:46 UTC. Of course, there were no risks at all for our planet.
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