Asteroid approaching Earth tonight carries a baby moon

Source: TOI

The asteroid that is going to zip past the Earth at nearly 6 million kilometers away tonight is not travelling alone. Nasa scientists tracking the asteroid with the giant Deep Space Network antenna in California have discovered that the asteroid has a small satellite or moon.

The asteroid is about 2.7 kilometers in diameter. The newly found moon that orbits it is just 600 meters wide. Such a ‘binary’ or double system is rare but not unknown to space watchers. About 16 per cent of asteroids with diameters 200 meters or more are binary or even triple systems, a Nasa statement said.

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Categories: Americas

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