As we described in the previous post, the 2012 TC4 is on a course to pass very close to our planet enabling the scientists to study it more appropriately. A new tracker of the asteroid which is set to move past Earth on October 12 shows us just how close it could come to a collision with our lunar rock. Maintaining a distance of only 31,000 miles, the 2012 TC4 will shoot past the Earth on 12th October. This is just around an eighth of the total distance between the Earth and the Moon.
According to scientists, the asteroid is supposed to fly so close to Earth that the gravitational pull of our planet is sure to affect this Space rock’s trajectory. An animated tracker from the website EarthSky shows that the projection of the asteroid as it safely passes by Earth and it might even shoot slightly upward after its encounter with Earth’s gravitation.
The alarming fact about this encounter is that our lunar rock would be waiting for the asteroid on the opposite direction and might come real close to 2012 TC4 which could lead to a crash if the Earth’s gravity exerts more tug than anticipated by the experts. The scientists confirm that the asteroid that is believed to be around 10-30 meters in size will pose no threat to Moon or life on Earth.
This extreme close fly-by will help NASA acquire valuable data related to the space-rock. According to Michael Kelley, Program scientist and NASA headquarters lead for the TC4 observation campaign, scientists have always been appreciated when they know when an asteroid will make close encounter with Earth but pass by safely as they can make preparations beforehand for the event to collect data to characterize and learn about it as much as possible.
This 2012 TC4 encounter has been equipped with another layer of effort as the scientists are all set to test the worldwide asteroid detection and tracking network while assessing the capability of scientists from all parts of the world to work together in situations with real potential threats.
The 2012 TC4 could have caused a great havoc if it were to crash into Earth’s vicinity. Believed to be 10-30 meters in size, the 2012 TC4 is bigger than the Chelyabinsk meteor which exploded above Russia leaving thousands of damaged building behind it along with 1,500 people injured by the same in the year 2013.

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