Some said it was ladder size. Others said it was more like Half the size of a giraffe. Either way, on March 11, 2022 at 21:22 TUC, a small asteroid hit the ocean 300 miles/470 kilometers off the Norwegian island of Jan Mayen.
Did the 6-foot/2-meter-wide asteroid — the size of a grand piano and officially named 2022 EB5 — slide through the observation network?
No, says NASA, which claims to have discovered it just two hours before it hit the polar ocean, the fifth time any asteroid has been observed before hitting the atmosphere.
Then NASA’s “Detective” Collision Hazard Assessment System calculated its trajectory, and revealed that it was due to hit the Earth’s atmosphere, thus alerting both the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) and NASA Planetary Defense Coordination Office.
“We were able to identify potential impact sites, which initially stretched from western Greenland to off the coast of Norway,” said Davide Farnocchia, a navigation engineer at JPL who developed the Scout. “As more observatories track the asteroid, our calculations of its path and impact site are becoming more accurate.”
As Scout predicted, 2022 EB5 entered the atmosphere southwest of Jan Mayen with infrasound detectors confirming the impact at the expected time.
Small asteroids like 2022 EB5 become bright enough to be seen in the night sky just two hours before they hit or approach Earth’s atmosphere. NASA projects one 2022 EB5 approximately every 10 months.
I wish you a clear sky and wide eyes.
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