Hawaii asteroid discovery flies close to Earth

Published On: Mar 05 2014 09:17:52 PM HST

An asteroid discovered by Hawaii scientists got pretty close to earth Wednesday. At one point the asteroid was closer to the Earth than the moon.

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The Pan-Starrs telescope on Haleakala uncovered the 100-foot-wide asteroid a week ago. But, around 11 am Hawaii time the asteroid was just 200,000 miles away and passed between the Earth and moon.

"We only see these things that are that small when they are close to the earth. So, the fact that we saw it all means it's nearby and in the neighborhood. A lot of them are whizzing by, not threatening at all, but this one was on a path that came pretty close to the earth," said Larry Denneau, an Institute of Astronomy engineer.

Scientists say there is no threat of impact. They say these near earth objects happen about twice a year and this one can only be seen with a high powered telescope.


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