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Space

Small Asteroid To Buzz Earth 171

ddelmonte writes in to tell us about a small near-earth object, discovered just 2 days ago, that is expected to pass within 64,000 km of our planet on March 2, 13:44 UT. NEO 2009 DD45 will be well inside the Moon's orbit and just under twice the altitude of geosynchronous satellites. According to Sky and Telescope, 2009 DD45's closest approach will be over the Pacific west of Tahiti, so observers in Australia, Japan, and perhaps Hawaii will have the best chance of spotting it with, say, an 8-in. telescope. Here's where you can generate an ephemeris of the object for your location. At closest approach NEO 2009 DD45 will be moving half a degree per minute and peaking around magnitude 10.5. It will be brighter than 13th magnitude for only a few hours.

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