Posted on Tue 12 February 2013

From where can you spot 2012 DA14?

On Friday 15 February, a 50-meter asteroid named 2012 DA14 will approach Earth to within a distance of just ~28 000 km. The internet is buzzing about this near-miss because the object is expected to become brighter than 9th magnitude for approximately 3 hours (18h00-21h30 UTC), peaking at a brightness of 7th magnitude near 19h45 UTC. Although this is just below the brightness limit of the unaided eye, it is within reach of good binoculars.

While there are plenty of maps online showing where in the sky you may find 2012 DA14, I could not find any maps showing where on Earth you have to be to get a good view. So I made a few maps myself. Green areas in the animated gif below indicate parts of the world where the asteroid will be above (and the Sun below) the horizon as it sweeps past. The maps were generated using a Python class which I pushed to my GitHub repository.

Visibility of 2012 DA14.

Visibility of 2012 DA14. Green areas indicate parts of the world where the asteroid will be above (and the Sun below) the horizon as it sweeps past.

Category: asteroids

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