Near-Earth asteroid 2021 UW1 very close encounter: an image – 29 Oct. 2021

In less than one day, the near-Earth asteroid 2021 UW1 will have a very close, but safe, approach with our planet, reaching a minimum distance from the center of the Earth of about 380.000 km, 99% of the average distance of the Moon. We imaged it and we share our view here.

Near-Earth asteroid 2021 UW1. 29 Oct. 2021.

Near-Earth asteroid 2021 UW1. 29 Oct. 2021.

The image above comes from a single, 120-second exposure, 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.

At the imaging time, asteroid 2021 UW1 was at about 1.2 millions km from us and approaching. It was discovered by the Mt. Lemmon Survey on 27 Oct. 2021.

This 16 – 35 meters large asteroid will reach its minimum distance (about 380.000 km, 99% of the average lunar distance) from us on 30 Oct. 2021, at 20:28 UTC (source: Nasa/JPL). Of course, there were no risks at all for our planet.

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