NASA Deep Space Network Captures Detailed Images of Potentially Hazardous Asteroid’s Flyby

NASA’s Deep Space Network recently tracked and captured radar images of a sizable asteroid, 2008 OS7, during its close pass by Earth on February 2. Although the asteroid, measuring between 650 feet and 1,640 feet wide, presented no imminent threat, the detailed images obtained through the radar system shed light on its surface features and revised size.

The asteroid, initially identified by the NASA-funded Catalina Sky Survey in 2009, was categorized as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (PHA) due to its substantial size and close proximity to Earth. The recent radar observations conducted using the 70-meter Goldstone Solar System Radar antenna dish near Barstow provided valuable insights into the asteroid’s characteristics.

Contrary to earlier estimates, the radar images revealed a mix of rounded and angular regions on the asteroid’s surface. Moreover, the observations indicated that the actual size of 2008 OS7 was smaller than initially thought. This discovery underscores the significance of precise measurements in gauging the attributes of near-Earth objects.

NASA’s ongoing commitment to studying asteroids and celestial bodies enhances our comprehension of the solar system’s dynamics and potential hazards. Leveraging advanced radar technology and observational capabilities, scientists are continually unraveling the mysteries of the cosmos while prioritizing the safety and security of our planet.

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