Why are astronomers unable to discover some asteroids approaching Earth?

Why are astronomers unable to discover some asteroids approaching Earth?
Why are astronomers unable to discover some asteroids approaching Earth?

Astronomers did not notice the asteroid 2021 SG, which approached the Earth on September 17, and did not discover it until after the asteroid fell directly near the Earth, that is, at a distance of 240,000 km from it.

Which is less than the distance that separates the moon from the earth.

This was acknowledged by NASA’s Director for the Study of Space Objects, Paul Chouds. Why did that happen? – Because the 2021 SG asteroid, like the “Chelyabinsk” asteroid, flew to Earth from the side of the sun, where it is impossible to recognize it against the background of our star if its dimensions are modest.

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Scientists believe that its length is not more than 94 meters and its width is not less than 42 meters. But his speed reached 68 thousand kilometers per hour. If the asteroid fell on Canadian soil, it would have caused severe damage. It would have caused a local tragedy if it had fallen on a Canadian city, as was the case after an asteroid fell 3,600 years ago on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, killing 8,000 people.

The asteroid crosses the Earth’s orbit once every 27 months.

It is reported that astronomers did not notice last year the asteroid 2020 VT4 with a diameter of 10 meters, which approached Earth to a distance of only 380 km and flew over the British Pitcairn Islands in the South Pacific. It had to collide with the International Space Station, which is flying at an altitude of between 340 and 430 km. Fortunately, the station was then over an area in the South Atlantic.

And in 2018, astronomers observed asteroid 2009 FH with a diameter of 20 meters, just one day before its dangerous approach to Earth. The asteroid flew at a high altitude of satellites (32,000 km).

And all these asteroids, including the asteroid “Chelyabinsk”, which fell on the Ural region in Russia in 2013, arrived from the direction of the sun, making it difficult for astronomers to detect them.

Humanity is still threatened until 2026, when NASA will launch the NEO Surveyor space telescope operating infrared, which can identify dangerous asteroids arriving from the sun at a distance of millions of kilometers, day and night, and against the background of the sun.

Source: Komsomolskaya Pravda

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