2014 HQ124

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2014 HQ124
PIA18412-Asteroid2014HQ124-20140608.jpg
2014 HQ124 radar images (8 June 2014)
Discovery[1]
Discovered by NEOWISE (C51)
Discovery date 23 April 2014
Designations
MPC designation 2014 HQ124
Minor planet category Aten NEO,
PHA[2]
Orbital characteristics[2]
Epoch 2014-May-23
(Uncertainty=2)[2]
Aphelion 1.072 AU (Q)
Perihelion 0.6297 AU (q)
0.8510 AU (a)
Eccentricity 0.2601
0.79 yr
215.3° (M)
Inclination 26.33°
257.6°
144.3°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions ~370 meters (1,210 ft)[3]
~20 hr[4][5]
Albedo 0.35?[5]
19.0[2]

2014 HQ124 (also written 2014 HQ124) is a near-Earth asteroid roughly 370 meters (1,210 ft) in diameter that passed 3.25 lunar distances (LD) from Earth on 8 June 2014.[6] It was discovered on 23 April 2014 by NEOWISE.[1] It is estimated that an impact event would produce the equivalent of 2,000 megatons of TNT and create a 5 km (3 mi) impact crater.[7] The news media misleadingly nicknamed it, The Beast.[8] 2014 HQ124 previously passed this close to Earth in 1952[6] and will not again until at least 2307.[9] Radar imaging suggests it may be a contact binary.[3]

2014 close approach[edit]

On 6 June 2014, the asteroid brightened to about apparent magnitude 13.7 while in the southern constellation of Horologium.[10] Near its closest approach to Earth of 3.25 Lunar distances on 8 June 2014, the asteroid crossed the celestial equator, making it a northern hemisphere object. It however had an elongation of about 20 degrees from the Sun,[10] and was lost in astronomical twilight during the closest approach to Earth. The Goldstone Deep Space Network observed the asteroid later on 8 June 2014,[5] when the asteroid was between 3.6 and 3.8 lunar distances.[3]

On average, an object about the size of 2014 HQ124 will pass this close to Earth every few years.[11] Similar events, where other 100+ meter diameter asteroids have or will soon pass less than 4 LD from Earth, include:

  • 4179 Toutatis (~3000 meters in diameter) passed 4.0 LD from Earth on 29 September 2004
  • 2004 XP14 (~500 meters in diameter) passed 1.1 LD from Earth on 3 July 2006
  • (308635) 2005 YU55 (~360 meters in diameter) passed 0.8 LD from Earth on 8 November 2011
  • 2014 EG45 (~140 meters in diameter) passed 3.2 LD from Earth on 4 March 2014[12]
  • (357439) 2004 BL86 (~600 meters in diameter) will pass 3.1 LD from Earth on 26 January 2015[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "MPEC 2014-H67 : 2014 HQ124". IAU Minor Planet Center. 2014-04-28. Retrieved 2014-06-03.  (K14HC4Q)
  2. ^ a b c d "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: (2014 HQ124)". Jet Propulsion Laboratory. 2014-06-02 last obs (arc=40 days). Retrieved 2014-06-03. 
  3. ^ a b c Dyches, Preston (2014-06-12). "Giant Telescopes Pair Up to Image Near-Earth Asteroid". JPL news. Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 2014-06-12. 
  4. ^ Amy Mainzer (2014-06-12). "Light curve from NEOWISE". Twitter: Amy Mainzer. Retrieved 2014-06-13. 
  5. ^ a b c Dr. Lance A. M. Benner (2014-05-30). "Goldstone Radar Observations Planning: 2014 HQ124". NASA/JPL Asteroid Radar Research. Retrieved 2014-06-03. 
  6. ^ a b "JPL Close-Approach Data: (2014 HQ124)". 2014-06-10 last obs (arc=48 days). Retrieved 2014-06-10. 
  7. ^ Mike Wall (2014-06-06). ""Beast" Asteroid to Fly by Earth on Sunday". Scientific American. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  8. ^ https://twitter.com/AreciboRadar/status/475709720842366977
  9. ^ "This was the closest Earth encounter by the object until at least 2307.". Twitter: Michael Busch. 2014-06-10. Retrieved 2014-06-10. 
  10. ^ a b "2014HQ124 Ephemerides for 4 June 2014 through 10 June 2014". NEODyS (Near Earth Objects – Dynamic Site). Retrieved 2014-06-03. 
  11. ^ "Asteroid Discovered by NASA to Pass Earth Safely". Jet Propulsion Laboratory. 2014-06-06. Retrieved 2014-06-07. 
  12. ^ "JPL Close-Approach Data: (2014 EG45)". 2014-04-04 last obs (arc=24 days). Retrieved 2014-06-03. 
  13. ^ "JPL Close-Approach Data: 357439 (2004 BL86)". 2013-03-12 last obs (arc=9.1 years). Retrieved 2014-06-03. 

External links[edit]