Blog Archives

Critical Observation Made on During First Night of Return to Operations

The existing astronomical observatories on Maunakea
returned to operations this weekend, and it didn’t take long for a significant
result to be achieved, not only for science, but for assuring the safety of the
Earth.

Observations of the near-Earth asteroid 2006 QV89
made on August 11 with the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) have ruled out
any potential future impact threat to the Earth by this asteroid for the next
century.

Read more ›

Posted in News


Four Candidate Sites Selected for Asteroid Sample Collection

After months grappling with the rugged reality of
asteroid Bennu’s surface, the team leading NASA’s first asteroid sample return
mission has selected four potential sites for the Origins, Spectral
Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer
(OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft to “tag” its cosmic dance partner.

Since its arrival in December 2018,

Read more ›

Posted in News


Asteroid’s surprise close approach illustrates need for more eyes on the sky

On 25 July, an asteroid the size of a football
field flew by Earth, coming within 65 000 km of our planet’s surface during its
closest approach – about one fifth of the distance to the Moon.

The 100 m-wide asteroid dubbed ‘2019 OK’ was
detected just days before it passed Earth,

Read more ›

Posted in News


MASCOT Confirms What Scientists Have Long Suspected

Ryugu and other
asteroids of the common ‘C-class’ consist of more porous material than was
previously thought. Small fragments of their material are therefore too fragile
to survive entry into the atmosphere in the event of a collision with Earth.
This has revealed the long-suspected cause of the deficit of this meteorite
type in finds on Earth.

Read more ›

Posted in News


Speeding up science on near-Earth asteroids

Modeling the
shape and movement of near-Earth asteroids is now up to 25 times faster thanks
to new Washington State University research.

The WSU
scientists improved the software used to track thousands of near-Earth
asteroids and comets, which are defined as being within 121 million miles or
about 1.3 times the distance to the sun.

Read more ›

Posted in News


ESA Confirms Asteroid will miss Earth in 2019

Asteroid 2006
QV89, a small object 20 to 50 metres in diameter, was in the news lately
because of a very small, 1-in-7000 chance of impact with Earth on 9 September
2019.

In the first
known case of ruling out an asteroid impact through a ‘non-detection’, ESA and
the European Southern Observatory have concluded that asteroid 

Read more ›

Posted in News


Japan’s Hayabusa2 probe makes ‘perfect’ touchdown on asteroid

Japan’s Hayabusa2 probe made a “perfect”
touchdown Thursday on a distant asteroid, collecting samples from beneath the
surface in an unprecedented mission that could shed light on the origins of the
solar system.

“We’ve collected a part of the solar system’s
history,” project manager Yuichi Tsuda said at a jubilant press conference
hours after the successful landing was confirmed.

Read more ›

Posted in News


Zwicky Transient Facility Spots Asteroid with Shortest Year

Astronomers have spotted an unusual asteroid with
the shortest “year” known for any asteroid. The rocky body, dubbed
2019 LF6, is about a kilometer in size and circles the Sun roughly every 151
days.

In its orbit, the asteroid swings out beyond Venus
and, at times, comes closer in than Mercury,

Read more ›

Posted in News


‘Oumuamua Is Not an Alien Spacecraft

An international team of asteroid and comet
experts, including two from the University of Hawaii, agrees on a natural
origin for our first interstellar visitor. On October 19, 2017, the Panoramic
Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System 1 (Pan-STARRS1) telescope, located
at the University of Hawaii’s Haleakala Observatory, discovered the first known
interstellar object to pass through our solar system.

Read more ›

Posted in News


When CubeSats meet asteroid

ESA’s Hera mission for planetary defence, being
designed to survey the smallest asteroid ever explored, is really three
spacecraft in one. The main mothership will carry two briefcase-sized CubeSats,
which will touch down on the target body. A French team has been investigating
what might happen at that initial instant of alien contact.

Read more ›

Posted in News


Visit Us

The Spaceguard Centre is a working observatory, and the main source of information
about near Earth objects in the UK.

We are open Wednesday to Sunday, so why not Visit Us?

Contact Us

The Spaceguard Centre,
Llanshay Lane,
Knighton, Powys,
LD7 1LW. United Kingdom.

Tel: 01547 520247 mail@spaceguardcentre.com