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It's One Of The Third Largest Near-Earth Asteroids
The inner moon, some 180 to 240 m (600 to 800 feet) across, takes roughly 7 to 8 hours to complete an orbit--the shortest orbital period for any of the 60 near-Earth asteroids known to have companions.
NASA has identified more than 12,000 NEOs to date, including 96 percent of near-Earth asteroids larger than 0.
Trajectories and explosive surface impacts are also shown for a more typical near-Earth asteroid, named Castalia.
NASA announced Friday that its OSIRIS-Rex spacecraft - bound for the near-Earth asteroid Bennu - had successfully scanned part of its surrounding space for Earth-Trojan asteroids.
NASA's Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking discovered the space rock on Boxing Day.
The object, with a diameter of 5 to 10 miles, may be an unusual asteroid or a dead comet stripped of all volatile material, said Steve Pravdo, project task manager for the Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking program at JPL.
Besides low-cost Earth-orbiting missions such as CHIPSat, now under development by SpaceDev for the University of California at Berkeley, SpaceDev is offering lunar orbiters, Mars probe carriers and near-Earth asteroid missions for sale as turn-key commercial products.
NASA's asteroid-sampling spacecraft - Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer, or OSIRIS-REx for short - is set to take off from Earth on Thursday evening for its date with Bennu, a near-Earth asteroid.
Using very precise ground-based observations, Stephen Lowry (University of Kent, UK) and colleagues have measured the speed at which the near-Earth asteroid (25143) Itokawa spins and how that spin rate is changing over time.
It was the fifth previously unknown asteroid that JPL's Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking system has discovered since its monthly observations began March 15.
The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer will travel to the near-Earth asteroid Bennu with the aim of mapping its surface and identifying, collecting and returning pristine samples of high science value.