Nasa to chronicle close Earth flyby of asteroid

Diagram depicting the passage of asteroid 2012 DA14 through the Earth-Moon system on 15 February 2013.
Image credit: Nasa/JPL-Caltech
Date:14 February 2013 Tags:, ,

Nasa Television will provide commentary starting at 9 pm in South Africa (2 pm EST) on Friday, 15 February, during the close, but safe, flyby of a small near-Earth asteroid named 2012 DA14. This flyby will provide a unique opportunity for researchers to study a near-Earth object up close.

The half-hour broadcast from Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory will incorporate real-time animation to show the location of the asteroid in relation to Earth, along with live or near real-time views of the asteroid from observatories in Australia, weather permitting.

At the time of its closest approach to Earth at approximately 9:25 pm in South Africa (2:25 pm EST), the asteroid will be about 27 600 kilometres above Earth’s surface over Indonesia.

The commentary will be available via Nasa TV and streamed live online at and

In addition to the commentary, near real-time imagery of the asteroid’s flyby before and after closest approach, made available to Nasa by astronomers in Australia and Europe, weather permitting, will be streamed beginning at about 7 pm in South Africa (noon EST) at the following website:

A Ustream feed of the flyby from a telescope at Nasa’s Marshall Space Flight Centre will be streamed for three hours starting at 4 am on 16 February in South Africa (9 pm EST). To view the feed and ask researchers questions about the flyby via Twitter, visit: