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Video: Cool movie of close-passing asteroid 2004 BL86

Asteroid 2004 BL86 and its newly discovered moon passed only 745,000 miles (1.2 million km) from Earth last week. Did you see the still photos? Now see the movie …

Radar data obtained from NASA’s Deep Space Network antenna at Goldstone, California and the Green Bank Telescope in West Virginia were used to make this movie of asteroid 2004 BL86 and its small, newly discovered moon.

The asteroid and its moon passed closer to Earth last Monday (January 26, 2015) than any asteroid this large will again until the year 2027. At its closest, the pair was about three times the moon’s distance.

Want more? Best images of asteroid 2004 BL86 as it swept near Earth.

A moon for an asteroid? Yup.

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Bottom line: A movie – made with radar data – of asteroid 2004 BL86 and its newly discovered moon, which passed about three times the moon’s distance on January 26, 2015.

Deborah Byrd

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