.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Friday, March 10, 2006


2004 VD17, the sword of Damocoles it's not.

Click image (generated in Celestia) to enlarge enough to see the orbits. Asteroid 2004 VD17 was briefly the bet noire of the asteroid world. For a short while it was at the unheard of level 4 in the Torino scale, with a 1 in 1000 chance of hitting Earth in 4 May 2102. It was subsequently degraded and now is only Torino scale 2. It seems to have fallen even further. The NEODys page lists 2004 VD17 as coming within 0.013 au of Earth in 7 November 2041, but when I plug the latest elements from the minor planet centre into SkyMap, it comes no closer that 0.16 au. Now it could be that SkyMap isn't as precise as NEODys over that period of time. I plugged these elements into Celestia, and it doesn't come close in this program either (they basically agree). I've generated a Celestia SSC file for 2004 VD17 that you can download here. Have a play with it, but you won't get any images of 2004 VD17 hanging over earth like I could with 2001 MN4.

Hi Ian
Great Story, thanks for posting a responce on my Blog, I'm glad someone reads them :-)
Did you catch the Mag 12 close flyby of a NEO early in the week ?
See this link from my post on IIS

I make it a point to drop into the NT blog and see what is going on up there.

Sorry, missed 2000 PN9 (as did most people it looks like), hopefully the next time something interesting comes past I'll catch it.
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?