Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (7482) 1994 PC1 close encounter: fly-by images and video – 18 Jan. 2022
As expected the potentially hazardous asteroid (7482) 1994 PC1 did a great show on the night of its fly-by: we showed it live to hundreds of thousands people from all over the world. Here it is a representative image.
The image above shows asteroid 1994 PC1 in different flavors: the main image was taken tracking the object, the upper left insert was grabbed exactly at the fly-by time (18 Jan. 2022, 21:51 UTC), while the upper right insert was taken ordinary tracking stars, so the asteroid left a long train (this is specular respect to the main image). All the images were remotely taken with the “Elena” (PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E) robotic unit available at Virtual Telescope.
The object was very bright and made our virtual guests happy, with its spectacular motion seen image after image.
Here it is a sequence we did using all the images we captured back to back. Note that images covers 81 minutes,while the video lasts much less, so the speed shown is much higher than in reality.
Our imagery was also featured on the European Space Agency’s twitter account:
There it goes! This ‘dot’ is a 1-kilometre wide asteroid hurtling through space at 20 km/s.
Last night, as predicted, it made a *safe* #closeapproach of Earth passing at a distance of ~2 million km – five times the distance of the Moon.
Ciao, for now, #1994PC1 #PlanetaryDefence https://t.co/RCSGsWLWHg
— ESA Operations (@esaoperations) January 19, 2022
Below you can find our very successful live feed:
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A totally amazing experience!! Thank you!! And your Italian-English actually added to my enjoyment 🙂