Earth’s new neighbor

We have a new neighbor, a small asteroid called 2009 DB:

An asteroid the size of a small house is slowly passing through space less than twice as far away as our moon.

The recently discovered space rock poses no immediate threat. It will, however, hang around.

The asteroid, catalogued as 2009 BD, is an oddity. Astronomers think it might be what’s known as a co-orbital asteroid, “circling the sun in near-tandem with our planet,” according to the web site Spaceweather.com.

Spaceweather.com has this to say:

Newly-discovered asteroid 2009 BD is slowly passing by Earth today only 400,000 miles away. The small 10m-wide space rock poses no threat, but it merits attention anyway. The orbit of 2009 BD appears to be almost identical to the orbit of Earth. 2009 BD may be a rare co-orbital asteroid, circling the sun in near-tandem with our planet. Extrapolating the motion of 2009 BD into the future, we see that it remains in the vicinity of Earth for many months to come, never receding farther than 0.1 AU (9.3 million miles) until Nov. 2010

Its unfortunate theres no quick launch facility available that could get a space probe out there to have a look at it. More here.

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