compiled by Dee Finney

updated -8-1-2005

See  1998ox4 and other more recent objects


Asteroid Hermes

METEOR - 10-02-03

J002E3- Another Moon around Earth

Asteroid 2003  QQ47
Astronomers say will hit earth on March 21, 2014 - NOT!!!

Asteroid 2002 AA 29 - FOLLOWS EARTH

Comet C/2002 T7 12-16-02 -
expected to come within earth's orbit in 2004

Comet C/2002 X5 (Kudo-Fujikawa) - 2-22-2003

Comet 2002 V 1 - 2-22-2003

NEW:  METEOR HITS MIDWEST - 3-25/26-2003

Comet C/2001 Q4 - 5-28-03
DUE MAY 15, 2004

Another asteroid just misses earth - 10-3-03

Asteroid 2004 FH - zooms past earth


After a great misery for mankind an even greater approaches.
The great cycle of the centuries is renewed:
It will rain blood, milk, famine, war and disease.
In the sky will be seen a fire, dragging a tail of sparks.

---Nostradamus, Century 2, Quatrain 46 (1654)

Radiant Duration Maximum
Perseids (PER) July 23-August 22 2005 Aug. 12 @ 18:29 UT
2006 Aug. 13 @ 00:12 UT

Moderate Activity:
Recommended experience level: Intermediate and up

Radiant Duration Maximum
Northern Iota Aquarids (NIA) August 11-September 10 Aug. 25/26
Southern Iota Aquarids (SIA) July 1-September 18 Aug. 6/7
Alpha Capricornids (CAP) July 15-September 11 Aug. 1/2
Northern Delta Aquarids (NDA) July 16-Sepember 10 Aug. 13/14
Kappa Cygnids (KCG) July 26-September 1 Aug. 18

Minor Activity
Recommended experience level: Expert

Radiant Duration Maximum
August Eridanids August 2-27 Aug. 11/12
Upsilon Pegasids July 25-August 19 Aug. 8/9
Alpha Ursa Majorids August 9-30 Aug. 13/14

Daylight Activity
Recommended experience level: Expert

Radiant Duration Maximum
Gamma Leonids August 14-September 12 Aug. 25/26


Largely as a result of a Congressional mandate, NASA established a "Spaceguard" program with a goal of finding 90 percent of all the Near Earth Asteroids (NEAs) larger than 1 kilometer (0.62 miles) in diameter by the end of 2008. Experts like Al Harris, one of our panel members, have estimated that the total population of NEAs larger than 1 kilometer is about 1,100. Since then, telescopic search programs have found about 640 NEAs, so more than half of the estimate has been found already.

As more and more of these objects are found, the search for the missing ones gets tougher and tougher. So while we are more than half way toward meeting the Spaceguard goal in terms of the number of objects, we are not halfway there in terms of the time it will take to find the goal of 90 percent of them. Nevertheless, it seems likely that we will have discovered 90 percent of the NEAs larger than 1 kilometer by sometime not much beyond the 2008 deadline.

But there are a vast number of NEAs smaller than 1 kilometer in diameter. There are likely to be more than 300,000 that are about 100 meters long -- larger in diameter than a football field. Because there are many more of them, they would be expected to hit Earth far more frequently than the near-Earth asteroids larger than 1 kilometer -- once every few thousand years for the 100 meter asteroids, as opposed to every half million years for the 1 kilometer or greater asteroids.

Why then is NASA concentrating their discovery efforts upon the larger NEAs? For that matter, why aren’t near-Earth comets included in the Spaceguard goal?


I started posting information about incoming objects a couple of years ago as they were expected to hit the earth at almost any moment.  Within days or weeks, the scientists changed their minds and though the objects came close, they did not actually hit the earth.  The last one, which wasn't even seen until it was already past, came within a distance of half the miles from earth to the moon.

I have heard people say, who have contact with extraterrestrials, that the last one which came so close was nudged by a UFO to make sure it missed the earth.  I would have no problem believing that to be the case. I don't believe that extraterrestrials would sit by and just watch the earth be destroyed by an outside force. They have a pact not to interfere with what man does to man, but they will not allow the earth to reach the point where mankind can no longer live on it.

That said, here is another impact scenario, which is so far out into time, there is nothing we need to worry about now or even get ready for, but at some point, I would hope that our scientists would figure out how to stop a predicted event like this.

C/2001 HT50 (LINEAR-NEAT) is~ 10.5 mg and will probably stay that for another year. Perihelion is July 20, 2003 but the perihelion distance is 2.8 AU. Presently it is in Canis Minor. It is up all night in the South.

C/2001 K5 (Linear) should be ~15 mg but no one saw it since perihelion (at 5.2 AU on Oct. 11, 2002). It is Hercules and unobservable until the end of February, when it will rise before dawn.

C/2001 Q4 (NEAT) is ~14.5 mg very slowly brightening, but it may be a bright comet by 2004. Perihelion will be on May 15, 2004. The comet is in Phynix, very low in the South and practically unobservable in all of 2003.
C/2002 Q4 - where to see

C/2001 RX14 (LINEAR) is ~11 mg in Ursa Maior, best seen any time after 11PM (until dawn) high in the sky. Perihelion is Jan. 10, 2003.

Bizarre NASA photograph, Kohoutek, was taken from Skylab in December, 1973


Asteroid Flyby Sunday  NY40  Due to hit earth in 2060


Asteroid NY40, which was just discovered on July 14, will be flying near the Earth on Sunday, August 18 and will be close enough to see through binoculars. Unlike NT7, which is now due to hit us on 2060, there's no chance that this one will collide with Earth.

"Flybys like this happen every 50 years or so," says Don Yeomans of NASA. The last time this happened was August 31, 1925, but the asteroid wasn't discovered until 77 years later. At the time of the flyby, no one even knew it was happening.

A team of observers led by Mike Nolan at the Arecibo radar station in Puerto Rico will "ping" NY40 with radio waves as it approaches Earth. This will produce a 3D map of the asteroid. Some of the other images taken this way show asteroids that are binary systems, with one rock orbiting another, and an asteroid shaped like a dog bone.

This will help them figure out if NY40’s orbit is likely to change in the future, putting it on a collision course with Earth. "Radar data will also improve our knowledge of the asteroid's orbit," says NASA’s Jon Giorgini. "At present, we know there's little risk of a collision with 2002 NY40 for decades. When the Arecibo radar measurements are done, the orbit uncertainties should shrink by more than a factor of 200. We'll be able to extrapolate the asteroid's motion hundreds of years into the past and into the future, too."

As it gets closer to Earth, the asteroid will get brighter and brighter. It will still be dimmer than the stars we see, but as asteroids go, it will be very bright. "Asteroids are hard to see," says Yeomans, "because they're mostly black like charcoal. The most common ones--carbon-rich C-type asteroids--reflect only 3% to 5% of the light that hits them. Metallic asteroids, which are somewhat rare, reflect more: 10% to 15%.”

After it passes by us, it will fade quickly, because asteroids have phases, like the moon,. The sunlit side of NY40 is now facing the Earth, so it’s full, like a full moon. On August 18th, after it crosses the Earth’s orbit on its way toward the sun, its phase will change from full to half, then the night side will face us and it will seem to disappear.

"Don't forget, most asteroids pose no threat to Earth. But they do contain valuable metals, minerals and even water that we might tap in the future," says Yeomans. “[But] we need to know more about near-Earth asteroids in case we ever need to destroy or deflect one.”

Could we recover from an asteroid impact, or would we go the way of the dinosaurs? Learn how past civilizations have dealt with disaster from “Catastrophobia” by Barbara Hand Clow and “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Armageddon” by David Hatcher Childress, click here.


Asteroid 1950 DA has a one in 300 probability of colliding with Earth on March 16, 2880.


Is a Large Asteroid Headed for Impact With Earth in 2880?

  David Braun
National Geographic News
April 4, 2002
Scientists have identified a thousand-yard-wide (one-kilometer-wide) asteroid that may be heading for a collision with Earth—878 years from now.

Using radar and optical measurements made over the past 51 years, researchers have calculated that there is up to a one-in-300 possibility that Asteroid 1950 DA will slam into Earth on March 16, 2880. Their work is published in the April 5 issue of Science.

"We calculated the probability of collision based on what we know about the physical aspects of the asteroid and many other factors," said Jon Giorgini of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. "As we get more information we will be able to adjust the level of probability up or down."

Odds of one in 300 may seem almost insignificant, but it is the highest Earth-impact potential ever assigned by scientists to an object in space, according to Giorgini.

The consequences of a collision from an asteroid a thousand yards in diameter are speculative. Could a direct hit destroy an entire city? Would an ocean impact create a massive tsunami capable of deluging adjacent coast lines?

"Nothing good can come from such an impact," said Giorgini. "But a collision between 1950 DA and Earth is so unlikely it is not worth worrying about. And even if it does look like there could be a collision, we have plenty of time and many ways to deflect the asteroid from its path."

Changing the Trajectory

One of the easiest ways to deflect the asteroid past Earth would be to alter its surface, changing the amount of heat energy it radiates, said Joseph Spitale, a research associate in planetary science at the University of Arizona–Tucson. That would have the effect of subtly altering the way the asteroid moves, causing it to slowly change its trajectory.

In a separate paper published in Science, Spitale describes how the so-called Yarkovsky Effect could be used to make an asteroid drift off its path. The Yarkovsky Effect is a term used to describe how an asteroid's trajectory can be influenced by its heat radiation.

"The thermal emission from an asteroid acts like a rocket force in the opposite direction, although it is really, really weak," Spitale said. "If we can somehow change the thermal radiation being emitted by an asteroid, we can affect the object's orbit. A tiny thrust acting over a long time can be enough to nudge an asteroid from a path heading towards the Earth to one that narrowly misses the Earth."

Because the Yarkovsky Effect is completely determined by temperatures on the surface of a body, Spitale explained, it can be manipulated if the surface can be altered in a way that changes that temperature distribution.

Asteroid 1950 DA "looks like a good candidate to test the Yarkovsky Effect," he added. "We have a really long base line in time and we are able to predict its orbit over that time."

To use the Yarkovsky Effect to nudge 1950 DA off its course would require doing something on Earth to change the asteroid's surface temperatures.

"I think people will come up with all sorts of creative ideas about that," Spitale said. "For example, if we could cover the surface of the asteroid with one centimeter (half an inch) of dirt, that would plausibly be enough to change the Yarkovsky Effect quite a bit. Of course, that's a lot of dirt and it would probably require a couple of hundred rockets to get it all up there. It would be really expensive."

Another possible solution, Spitale said, would be to "paint" the asteroid's surface white. "That would make a big change to the way the object reflects sunlight. That might require a thickness of only one millimeter or so (less than a 20th of an inch) over the entire surface," he said.

A third solution might be the use of conventional explosives. One rocket might be enough to complete the job, and getting it there would certainly be possible using current space technology.

The last approach would be the cheapest solution, Spitale said. "Unfortunately, you would probably lose most of the debris to space," he said. "However, this approach might alter the character of the surface in some other useful way."

How to push 1950 DA away from the Earth—and whether it will ever be necessary to do so— depends entirely on the exact physical nature of the asteroid, said Giorgini. "We won't know for sure whether this asteroid is on a collision course until we can determine which way its north pole is pointing."

Current calculations are based on all the possibilities, and the outcome of these scenarios, he noted, ranges from a zero to 0.33 percent probability that there will be a convergence in the orbits of Earth and the asteroid.

Host of Factors

This is the first time such a wide array of factors has been taken into account in predicting an asteroid's orbit, Giorgini said.

He and the other researchers looked at not only the asteroid but also factors such as the gravitational influence of other asteroids, the shape of the sun, and the effect of solar wind (the forces created by light and heat from the sun).

Until now, 1950 DA had been seen only twice—once in 1950 and again on December 31, 2000. Although the asteroid orbits the sun once every 2.2 years, its orbit is close to that of Earth only about once in every 51 years.

The asteroid can be seen visually through telescopes as a moving point of light. Only through radar, however, can scientists determine the nature of its surface and how it spins.

Because the asteroid needs to be fairly close to Earth for radar to be effective, opportunities to study it with this technology are rare. Astronomers can use telescopes to observe the asteroid at greater distances before it fades from view.

The next time scientists will be able to use radar to study the asteroid will be in 2032. But Giorgini said astronomers will get an optical view of the asteroid in about five or six years, when there may be an opportunity to learn more about its physical aspects.

"We need to know how it spins, its mass, its exact shape, and the patterns of darkness and lightness on its surface," Giorgini said. "If we can't get this information from our telescopes, then the only way to do it will be to send a spacecraft to go and take a look at it."


Sunday, April 14, 2002


Could an asteroid doom Earth?

NASA engineer Jon D. Giorgini discusses his recent discovery

Posted: April 14, 2002 1:00 a.m. Eastern

A Spanish-language news website,, conducted an exclusive interview with Jon D. Giorgini, a scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., who authored a study finding that an asteroid
six-tenths of a mile wide could smash into Earth with the explosive force of millions of tons of TNT in 878 years. The asteroid, "1950 DA," is the most threatening to Earth of all of the known large asteroids, though the odds are only about one in 300 that it would impact the planet. Nevertheless, the threat underscores the importance of new discoveries that could prevent a future cataclysm. Here is the exclusive English interview.

By Carlos Leon

© 2002

Q: What does this new study reveal about asteroids?

A: It shows that we need to know the physical properties of asteroids to predict their motion over long time spans - how they spin, their mass, their shape and how the surface reflects light and radiates heat. These things can change the position of the asteroid by millions of miles, given enough time and gravity amplification during close approaches to the planets and make the difference between a hit or a miss.

Jon D. Giorgini

For example, for 1950 DA, our radar observations could only narrow down the spin direction to two possible general zones. If one direction is true, there would be little chance of the asteroid hitting Earth. If another is
true, the probability of collision would be near one in 300.

This is because light hits the asteroid and warms it. The warm side then rotates back into darkness and radiates heat. This acts like a weak rocket that pushes on the asteroid. Where this "rocket" points is determined by the
direction the asteroid spins, which we don't know and may not be able to determine for many years or decades.

Q: How long did it take to complete this study, and about how many engineers and scientists worked on it?

A: Total time involved was about six months, mostly to improve the physics and software required to do the analysis properly. Future cases could be studied more quickly as a result. This study draws on every branch of
science, mathematics and computer science simultaneously, and involved trillions and trillions of sequential calculations performed using a computer. Thirteen other people are listed as co-authors for critical or
significant contributions to the study. These ranged from operating the radar during the experiment to finding the original 1950 photographs of the asteroid and remeasuring its position. Everyone reviewed and commented on
the manuscript to check for errors or deficiencies.

Q: How was this study conducted?

A: We used two different methods to compute the impact probability and both gave similar results. In one way, we looked at 10,000 statistically possible variations on our "highest probability" orbit solution. Each possible
trajectory was extrapolated 878 years into the future using all the physics required to do that. We then counted how many of those trajectories ran into the Earth on March 16, 2880: 33 out of the 10,000, thus the 0.33 percent
collision probability. For most factors, it isn't possible to account for them exactly. For example, we don't know precisely how much the Earth's mass - thus gravitational pull - is. We only have a statistical confidence range there is a 99.7 percent chance it is between X and Y . Although X and Y are pretty close together! So we looked at the extremes, the maximum possible and the minimum possible. In this way, you know that the truth will
be somewhere in between the bounds, even if you can't pin it down exactly.

Q: If this asteroid, 1950 DA, were to hit planet Earth, is there an exact location where it would impact?

A: The timing is too uncertain to give an exact answer. In some ways, it doesn't matter because an object this size would cause serious global consequences no matter where it hit. In the unlikely event it did hit, it would most likely be in the Atlantic Ocean.

Q: Is there anything that can be done to stop an asteroid from hitting Earth?

A: That's one of the interesting results of the study. Over centuries, sunlight and heat emission are enough to move an asteroid, at least one this size. So if future generations determine the risk is increasing based on new
information, they could simply coat the surface of 1950 DA with chalk or charcoal, or send a solar sail spacecraft mission that ends by running into the asteroid and collapsing around it - sort of like shrink-wrapping it. This would change the way it absorbs light and let sunlight do the work of moving it. Time is the key. If you can change the speed of an asteroid on an impact trajectory by only 1 millimeter per second 300 hundred years in
advance, you can cause it to miss.

On the other hand, if like the dinosaurs, you only see the threat in the last 10 seconds as it's burning through the atmosphere toward impact, there's nothing you can do because it's hundreds of millions of tons of rock
moving at 14.2 kilometers per second. The dinosaurs were around for 150 million years, all big and bad, but they got burned in the worst way possible because they didn't know their math and physics. They never recognized the threat until the final moments.

We are in a very different situation. The key is advanced warning. You want hundreds of years of warning, because 10 seconds leaves you with no options. The value of the study was in determining what we need to consider when predicting so far into the future. The goal was to find out what limits our ability to predict these events. Now we have a much better idea.

Q: What are some of the effects on planet Earth if an asteroid - the 1950 DA or a much larger one - were to hit planet Earth?

A: Something the size of 1950 DA (1.1 kilometers) moving at its encounter velocity of 14.25 kilometers per second would have 100,000 megatons of energy to dissipate upon impact. The crater would be about 10-20 kilometers wide. Molten material would be ejected, perhaps to temporarily orbit the Earth, then reenter and trigger fires around the world. If it hit in water, the tidal wave would inundate most adjoining coastal areas. Dust and steam would be injected into the atmosphere for some period of time.

Q: Have the studies regarding asteroids and other objects hitting Earth indicated that as the years go by, they are getting closer and closer to actually hitting Earth?

A: No. Each asteroid's path through space is different, and there is no tendency for them to all get closer to the Earth. Most asteroids are in the belt between Mars and Jupiter. They will remain there for hundreds of millions of years or more and never come anywhere near the Earth.

Q: Have most scientists, including you personally, now concluded that asteroids killed off the dinosaurs? If not that, what did in your opinion?

A: Many have, because of the suddenness of their disappearance, the presence of the iridium layer in the rock laid down at the time - iridium normally being more common in asteroidal material - and the discovery of a large
impact crater off the Yucatan peninsula that seems to have been created at the same time the dinosaurs disappeared and was made by an object large enough - more than 10 times larger than 1950 DA - to have caused the global extinctions that evidently occurred. That said, one shouldn't close one's mind to other possibilities if there is evidence to support them, or there is an explanation that better fits the evidence we have. But the conclusion regarding the dinosaurs is reasonable.

Q: Can an asteroid potentially destroy or seriously damage any of the nine planets, including Earth, in the solar system?

A: An asteroid or comet could make the surface of the Earth very difficult for life. But if you mean "shatter" a planet, then no, there are no known asteroids big enough or moving in such a way that that could happen. Events
like that may have happened during the formation of the solar system and the Earth's moon billions of years ago, but not now.

Q: What are some of the current studies, or future ones, that you plan to work on?

A: We observe three or four asteroids with radar every month. This weekend, we have an asteroid called 1999 GU3 scheduled. Earlier this week, asteroid 2002 FD6 went past and was observed using the Goldstone planetary radar.

I'm currently finishing a study to determine what asteroids the Stardust spacecraft might be able to visit as it travels through the solar system.

Jon D. Giorgini has a bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering from Iowa State University and a master's degree in aerospace engineering, specializing in celestial mechanics, from the University of Texas in Austin.

He has worked at JPL for almost 11 years. He was navigator for the Magellan spacecraft during its mapping of Venus (1991-1993) and subsequent aerobraking, then worked for a time on asteroids. He went back to spacecraft
navigation for the Mars Global Surveyor mission interplanetary phase (1995-1997), before returning to work on asteroids and NEAR navigation during its cruise and then to NEAR radio science during the mapping phase.
As a member of the asteroid radar observing team, he is responsible for the orbit analysis and predictions used to operate the radar tracking and data acquisition systems. He has worked on more than 100 asteroid radar targets since 1994. He also developed JPL's Horizons On-Line Ephemeris system that sits on the Internet and allows people to determine the position and motion of the objects in the solar system. His title is senior engineer in the Solar System Dynamics Group at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Carlos Leon is editor of the Spanish-language news website 

A Christmas Comet

By Roger W. Sinnott

Comet Kudo-Fujikawa is seen here in this CCD image taken on December 15th from Las Cruces, NM, about a day after its discovery. Courtesy Bert and Janet Stevens.

Updated December 17th. | Early on the morning of December 14th, Japanese amateur Tetuo Kudo was searching the skies with his giant 20 x 120 binoculars. While scanning the constellation Hercules, he spotted something new — a fuzzy 9th-magnitude glow moving slowly east-southeast. Follow-up observations by Ken-ichi Kadota (Saitama, Japan) confirmed the object and revealed a short tail about 1/3° in length, pointing away from the Sun.

The comet (C/2002 X5) was announced on International Astronomical Union Circulars 8032 and 8033, and has been officially named Comet Kudo-Fujikawa.

A preliminary orbit calculated by Brian G. Marsden of the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, indicates that this comet is headed for perihelion in late January,

Binoculars should be all you need to spot the new comet just before dawn in the last two weeks of December. (You can find when dawn begins at your site by entering your location into our almanac.) Start with the bright landmark stars Arcturus (top right) and Vega (lower left). The sky's position with respect to the horizon is shown very approximately. This horizon is drawn for skywatchers at 40° north latitude when dawn begins around the end of December. Before that date the comet will be less high than shown here; after that it will be higher than here. Stars are plotted to magnitude 6.8. Sky & Telescope diagram.

It will pass well inside the orbit of Mercury and may brighten considerably. Unfortunately, it will then be almost directly behind the Sun as seen from Earth, hence virtually impossible to observe. Before that time, Northern Hemisphere observers should be able to follow the comet with binoculars in the morning sky through mid-January. Skywatchers in the Southern Hemisphere are in a position to see it emerging from the Sun's glare in late February, in the evening sky.

Currently the comet is about 7th magnitude, making it a viable binocular object for amateurs. It could be 6th magnitude or brighter by the year's end. Contributing editor Steven James O'Meara, observing from Volcano, Hawaii, on the morning of the 16th, reported the comet as being "Magnitude 7.8. Bright, easy target — could have been discovered from a city with a small telescope. Could not confirm a tail."

See  to see the Ephemeris on the comet.

2002 AA 29

Moon-like Asteroid to Make Close Earth Approach

Fri Jan 3, 9:43 AM ET

By Staff,

An asteroid that behaves something like a second Moon to Earth will make its closest approach to our planet next week before shuttling back into deep space for nearly a century.

The space rock is about 200 feet (60 meters) across and never gets as close as the real Moon. Scientists say there is no chance it will hit Earth anytime in the foreseeable future.

First reported in October and named 2002 AA29, the asteroid moves in a horseshoe-like pattern around Earth, inhabiting the same region of space through which the planet travels. It is under the gravitational influence of both Earth and the Sun, sometimes leading Earth around the Sun and sometimes lagging behind during Earth's annual trek.

"In some ways, the Earth and this asteroid are like two race cars on a circular track," said Paul Chodas, a researcher at NASA's Propulsion Laboratory, in a statement released today by NASA. "Right now the asteroid is on a slightly slower track just outside Earth's, and our planet is catching up."

On Wednesday, Jan. 8, the rock will be about 3.7 million miles (5.9 million kilometers) from Earth. The Moon, Earth's only true natural satellite, is a mere 238,900 miles (384,402 kilometers) away.

"Unlike race cars, the two bodies will not pass when they approach each other," Chodas said. "Instead, the combined gravitational effects of the Earth and Sun will nudge the asteroid onto a slightly faster track just inside Earth's, and it will begin to pull ahead."

In 95 years, the asteroid will have advanced all the way around to where it is catching up to the Earth from behind. A similar interaction will then push the asteroid back onto a slower outside track, and the pattern will repeat.

In about 600 years, the asteroid may begin looping around Earth like a tiny, distant quasi-moon.

"The asteroid will appear to orbit the Earth at that time, but in fact it will be too far away to be considered a true satellite of our planet," Chodas said. "Our calculations indicate the space rock will circle the Earth as a quasi-satellite for about 40 years before resuming its horseshoe orbital pattern."

Earth's gravity keeps the asteroid at bay, said Don Yeomans, JPL manager of NASA's Near Earth Objects Program Office. "The asteroid and Earth take turns sneaking up on each other, but they never get too close," Yeomans said.


Earth & Asteroid Play Orbital Cat and Mouse Game

January 2, 2003

D.C. Agle
(818) 393-9011
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.

Donald Savage
(202) 358-1727
NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C.

News Release: 2003-001

The first asteroid discovered to orbit the Sun in nearly the same path as Earth will make its closest approach to our planet this month before scurrying away for 95 years.

The space rock, measuring about 60 meters (approximately 200 feet) across, is like a mouse teasing a cat. According to an international team of astronomers, including a researcher from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., the asteroid approaches the Earth, first on one side and then on the other. The team's report appeared in the October 2002 issue of the journal Meteoritics & Planetary Science.

The asteroid, named 2002 AA29, traces an unusual horseshoe pattern relative to Earth. The asteroid alternately leads and follows Earth relative to Earth. The asteroid alternately leads and follows Earth around the Sun without ever passing it.

"In some ways, the Earth and this asteroid are like two racecars on a circular track," said JPL's Dr. Paul Chodas, who discovered the object's unusual motion. "Right now the asteroid is on a slightly slower track just outside Earth's, and our planet is catching up."

On January 8, 2003, the tiny body will come within approximately 5.9 million kilometers (3.7 million miles) of Earth, its closest approach for almost a century. "Unlike racecars, the two bodies will not pass when they approach each other," Chodas said. "Instead, the combined gravitational effects of the Earth and Sun will nudge the asteroid onto a slightly faster track just inside Earth's, and it will begin to pull ahead."

In 95 years, the asteroid will have advanced all the way around to where it is catching up to Earth from behind. A similar interaction with gravity from both Earth and the Sun will then push the asteroid back onto a slower outside track, and the pattern will repeat. To an observer moving with the Earth, the asteroid appears to trace out a horseshoe pattern.

"There's no possibility that this asteroid could hit Earth, because Earth's gravity rebuffs its periodic advances and keeps it at bay," said Dr. Don Yeomans, JPL manager of NASA's Near Earth Objects Program Office. "The asteroid and Earth take turns sneaking up on each other, but they never get too close."

The team's calculations show that in about 600 years, the asteroid may begin looping around Earth like a tiny, distant quasi-moon. "The asteroid will appear to orbit the Earth at that time, but in fact it will be too far away to be considered a true satellite of our planet," Chodas said. "Our calculations indicate the space rock will circle the Earth as a quasi-satellite for about 40 years before resuming its horseshoe orbital pattern."

Other members of the team investigating this object include Dr. Martin Connors, Athabasca University, Canada; Dr. Seppo Mikkola, University Connors, Athabasca University, Canada; Dr. Seppo Mikkola, University of Turku, Finland; Dr. Paul Wiegert, Queen's University, Canada; Dr. Christian Veillet, Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, Hawaii; and Dr. Kim A. Innanen, York University, Canada.

JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Calif.

2002 C/2002 T7 12-30-02

Longwood Warren/Hampshire, UK - 1995

One of the leading exponents of Crop Circle Research, Colin Andrews of CPR International, together with Professor Gerald Hawkins were the first to discover interesting analogies between this formation and our own Solar System. The formation seemed to illustrate the inner planets of our solar system, with the notable exception of planet Earth.  There are 65 asteroids in the outer ring. Earth is missing from its planetary orbit.

Gerald Hawkins started to calculate planetary positions of the real planets in the Solar System to see if they would ever align to the positions indicated by the crop formation.

Maurice Osborn has determined that the alignment of these planets would be exactly the same as the crop circle of Longwood Warren/Hampshire at April 16, 2004.

Gerald Hawkins started to calculate planetary positions of the real planets in the Solar System to see if they would ever align to the positions indicated by the crop formation.

The first date he 'discovered' was September 1st 2033. Having studied some of Colin Andrew's data, I became more interested to do my own research into this formation. Not only did I want to try and verify Colin and Gerald's findings for myself, but I wondered if this alignment would be repeated for other years, and if so what the positions of the 'missing' planet Earth would be. Using a variety of computer applications I managed to re-create the view of our Solar System at the required times.

Paul Vigay disagrees slightly with Colin's dates. Rather than an alignment on 1st September 2033, my research indicates a preferred date of 31st August 2033, which is close but more significant in light of some other dates subsequently discovered.

See:  for other years in the future.

David Pinnegar shows that this same alignment already happened in July 25, 1995 when the crop pictogram was created and again in 1998.


The difference is that earth is still here.  So what is this crop pattern telling us?  That a comet or asteroid is going to hit earth?  That is what many prophets have been telling us for several years.

Something very odd is happening to the comet - this isn't the comet's motion, or bad tracking, the inner coma really is a most peculiar elongated shape and quite unlike on Sunday night (or even last night). The image is raw (no flat field), but should be perfectly reliable.


Clear image on July, 2000

Recent comet discoveries include C/2002 T7, which comes inside the earth's orbit when at perihelion in April 2004, and given its current brightness, it is expected to become a faintish-naked-eye object in May 2004 (assuming m_1 = 6.5 + 5 log Delta + 7.5 log r, with n = 3 assumed generally now for such newly discovered long-period comets). [12/30/02]

Possible Bright Comet in 2004

IAU Circular 8003 (October 29, 2002) announced the discovery by the LINEAR survey of a comet that may become naked eye in April-June 2004. Designated C/2002 T7 (LINEAR), the comet is currently m1~16.5-17.5. The preliminary orbit suggests that perihelion will occur on April 23, 2004 at a distance of 0.6 AU.

C/2002 T7 (LINEAR) was announced on 29 Oct. 2002 in MPEC 2002-U43 based on 88 observations during 12-29 Oct. by 17 observatories. Its 160.6° retrograde path is calculated as being parabolic with perihelion at 0.613 AU on 23 April 2004. The German Comet Section has reported that T7 may reach naked-eye visibility around the time of the much anticipated NEO comet C/2001 Q4 (NEAT), and Jonathan Shanklin says T7 "could be an impressive object in the spring and early summer of 2004."

C/2002 T7 (LINEAR) is ~16 mg, slowly brightening. Perihelion will be April 23, 2004 at 0.6 AU, when it may become visible by the naked eye. The comet is in Taurus, and can be observed all night.


This is movement over a 2 hr.period


C/2002 T7 (LINEAR) is ~16 mg, slowly brightening. Perihelion will be April 23, 2004 at 0.6 AU, when it may become visible by the naked eye. The comet is in Taurus, and can be observed all night.

C/2002 T7 (LINEAR)

Orbital Elements

The following orbital elements are taken from MPC 48096:

C/2002 T7 (LINEAR)

Epoch 2004 Apr. 25.0 TT = JDT 2453120.5

T 2004 Apr. 23.0600 TT MPCM

q 0.614500 (2000.0) P Q

z -0.000812 Peri. 157.7392 +0.4343476 -0.8376121

+/-0.000005 Node 94.8569 -0.8683987 -0.2917231

e 1.000499 Incl. 160.5809 -0.2392192 -0.4618480

From 1212 observations 2002 Oct. 12-2003 Mar. 9, mean residual 0".5.

Elements are also available for the current standard epoch:

C/2002 T7 (LINEAR)

Epoch 2003 June 10.0 TT = JDT 2452800.5

T 2004 Apr. 23.0724 TT MPCM

q 0.614454 (2000.0) P Q

z -0.000704 Peri. 157.7429 +0.4342372 -0.8376595

+/-0.000005 Node 94.8535 -0.8684451 -0.2916119

e 1.000432 Incl. 160.5794 -0.2392514 -0.4618322


Spaceweather News for Feb. 15, 2004

Comet C/2002 T7 (LINEAR) is approaching Earth and brightening every day. It's not yet a naked-eye object, but the 7th-magnitude fuzzball is easy to see through backyard telescopes. The comet lies not far from brilliant Venus in the western sky after sunset.

For the next three months, the comet will continue to brighten as it nears Earth. May 19th is the date of closest approach (0.27 AU). At that time
C/2002 T7 might glow brighter than a 1st magnitude star--easily seen with the unaided eye. (Note: there is considerable uncertainty about how bright
this object will become.) In May you'll have to be in the southern hemisphere to see it easily. Now is the best time for northern hemisphere
observers to look, before the comet plunges south.

Visit for more information and images.

2002 - NT7

2-24-2002 -

By Dr David Whitehouse

BBC News Online science editor

An asteroid discovered just weeks ago has become the most threatening object yet detected in space.

A preliminary orbit suggests that 2002 NT7 is on an impact course with Earth and could strike the planet on 1 February, 2019 - although the uncertainties are large.

Astronomers have given the object a rating on the so-called Palermo technical scale of threat of 0.06, making NT7 the first object to be given a positive value.

From its brightness, astronomers estimate it is about two kilometres wide, large enough to cause continent-wide devastation on Earth.

Many observations

Although astronomers say the object definitely merits attention, they expect more observations to show it is not on an Earth-intersecting trajectory.

This asteroid has now become the most threatening object in the short history of asteroid detection

Dr Benny Peiser

It was first seen on the night of 5 July, picked up by the Linear Observatory's automated sky survey programme in New Mexico, US.

Since then astronomers worldwide have been paying close attention to it, amassing almost 200 observations in a few weeks.

Could it be deflected?

Dr Benny Peiser, of Liverpool John Moores University in the UK, told BBC News Online that "this asteroid has now become the most threatening object in the short history of asteroid detection".

NT7 circles the Sun every 837 days and travels in a tilted orbit from about the distance of Mars to just within the Earth's orbit.

Potential devastation

Detailed calculations of NT7's orbit suggest many occasions when its projected path through space intersects the Earth's orbit.

Researchers estimate that on 1 February, 2019, its impact velocity on the Earth would be 28 km a second - enough to wipe out a continent and cause global climate changes.

However, Dr Peiser was keen to point out that future observations could change the situation.

He said: "This unique event should not diminish the fact that additional observations in coming weeks will almost certainly - we hope - eliminate the current threat."

Easily observable

According to astronomers, NT7 will be easily observable for the next 18 months or so, meaning there is no risk of losing the object.

Observations made over that period - and the fact that NT7 is bright enough that it is bound to show up in old photographs - mean that scientists will soon have a very precise orbit for the object.

Dr Donald Yeomans, of the US space agency's (Nasa) Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, told BBC News Online: "The orbit of this object is rather highly inclined to the Earth's orbit so it has been missed because until recently observers were not looking for such objects in that region of space."

Regarding the possibility of an impact, Dr Yeomans said the uncertainties were large.

"The error in our knowledge of where NT7 will be on 1 February, 2019, is large, several tens of millions of kilometres," he said.

Dr Yeomans said the world would have to get used to finding more objects like NT7 that, on discovery, look threatening, but then become harmless.

"This is because the problem of Near-Earth Objects is now being properly addressed," he said.


By Kate Kelland


LONDON (July 24, 2002) - A massive asteroid could hit Earth in just 17 years' time, destroying life as we know it, a British space expert said on Wednesday.

The asteroid -- the most threatening object ever detected in space -- is 1.2 miles wide and apparently on a direct collision course with Earth.

"Objects of this size only hit the Earth every one or two million years," said Dr Benny Peiser, an asteroid expert at Liverpool John Moore's University in northern England.

"In the worst case scenario, a disaster of this size would be global in its extent, would create a meltdown of our economic and social life, and would reduce us to dark age conditions," he told Reuters.

But Peiser and other space experts say they are pretty confident this nightmare scenario will not come about.

"This thing is the highest threat that has been catalogued, but the scale in terms of the threat keeps changing," said Peter Bond, spokesman for the Royal Astronomical Society.

"If it did hit the Earth it would cause a continental-size explosion...but it is a fairly remote possibility."

The asteroid -- named 2002 NT7 -- was first detected earlier this month by the United States Linear sky survey program.

Since then, Peiser said scientists at the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) near-Earth objects team and at Pisa University in Italy have carried out orbit calculations to work out the probability and potential date of impact to define the risk it poses.

Their calculations show it could hit the earth on February 1, 2019.

"The impact probability is below one in a million, but because the first impact date is so early -- only 17 years from now -- and the object is very large, it's been rated on the impact risk Palermo Scale as a positive," Peiser said. "It is the first object which has ever hit a positive rating."

Scientists warn, however, that the risk rating has not been reviewed by the International Astronomical Union, which is the main international body responsible for announcing such risks.

Peiser said 2002 NT7 would continue to be monitored by space experts across the world, and that over time, these observations would probably erase the threat posed by it.

"In all likelihood, in a couple of months additional observations will eliminate this object from the list of potential impacts," he said. "I am very confident that additional observations over time that it is actually not on a collision course with Earth."

But he warned that the world should take this as wake-up call and set about preparing for the reality of an asteroid hit in the future.

"Sooner or later -- and no one can really tell us which it will be -- we will find an object that is on a collision course. That is as certain as "Amen" in church. And eventually we will have to deflect an object from its collision course," he said.

At the moment, he added, scientists fear it could take at least 30 years for the world to be able to devise and set up a mission to deal with such a threat -- a timescale which would be woefully inadequate if the 2019 strike were to happen.

07/24/02 08:56 ET

Copyright 2002 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved


Astronomers Monitoring Asteroid


.c The Associated Press

LONDON (AP) - Astronomers are carefully monitoring a newly discovered 1.2-mile-wide asteroid to determine whether it is on a collision course with Earth.

Initial calculations indicate there is a chance the asteroid - known as 2002 NT7 - will hit the Earth on Feb. 1, 2019. But scientists said Wednesday that the calculations are preliminary and the risk to the planet is low.

``The threat is very minimal,'' Donald Yeomans, of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., told British Broadcasting Corp. radio. ``An object of this size would be expected to hit the Earth every few million years, and as we get additional data I think this threat will go away.''

The object was detected on July 9 by the Lincoln Near Earth Asteroid Research Project in New Mexico. It orbits the sun every 837 days, and NASA scientists predict its path could intersect Earth's orbit. But they say more observations over the coming months will help them plot its course more accurately.

NASA's Near Earth Object program gives the asteroid a rating of ``1'' on the Torino impact hazard scale - within a range of ``events meriting careful monitoring,'' but not concern.

However, the discovery has provided more ammunition for those who say humans should take the risk posed by space objects more seriously.

``There's a good chance this particular object won't hit us, but we know that a large object will hit us sooner or later,'' said British lawmaker Lembit Opik, who has long warned of the danger posed by asteroids.

NASA estimates that asteroids big enough to cause catastrophic destruction could theoretically hit Earth every million years, or at longer intervals.

Last month an asteroid the size of a soccer field missed the Earth by 75,000 miles - less than one-third of the distance to the moon in one of the closest known approaches by objects of its size. Scientists said if it had hit a populated area, it would have released as much energy as a large nuclear weapon.

On the Net:

NASA's 2002 NT7 impact risk:

07/24/02 07:19 EDT

2002 C/2002 X5  - 1-25-2003


Kudo-Fujikawa is passing inside the orbit of Mercury, the innermost planet. On Wednesday it will make its closest approach, about 17.7 million miles (28.4 million kilometers) from the Sun, before starting its swing back out through the solar system,beyond Earth. Many comets carve such highly elliptical paths on orbits that can take anywhere from a few years to a few hundred years to complete.

Taken from

HOT COMET: Comet C/2002 X5 (Kudo-Fujikawa) is plunging toward the Sun. On Jan. 29th, it will be 0.19 AU from our star--even closer than Mercury!

Intense sunlight will hide the encounter from sky watchers, but not from the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), which is able to block the Sun's glare using onboard coronagraphs. C/2002 X5 will enter SOHO's field of view on Jan. 25th and remain visible until the end of the month. Pictured above is a simulation, prepared by science writer Frank Reddy, of what the encounter might look like. How bright will the comet become? How big will its tail grow? Will the comet break apart? No one knows.

C/2002 X5 (Kudo-Fujikawa) is ~ 15 mg in Capricornus, visible invisible due to the Sun. Perihelion is Jan. 29, 2003. Comes back to N in mid-March as a 6 mg object. Read abo


See this url to follow the comet into the Southern Hemisphere

C/2002 X5 ( Kudo-Fujikawa )

It only brightened to 6 mag, and became too close to the sun to observe. In the SOHO images, it brightened after the perihelion passage and two broad tails were visible. It started to be observed since early February in the Southern Hemisphere, however, the comet faded rapidly from 5 mag to 7 mag. In the Northern Hemisphere, it will appear again in March in the evening sky.

Date(TT) R.A. (2000) Decl. Delta r Elong. m1 Mot.(') p.a. Best Time(A, h)

Feb. 15  23  28.41  -42  54.7     0.890 0 .595  36  7.4  155.4   98.2  19:06  ( 48,-16)

Feb. 22    1   8.19   -42    5.6    0.863   0.770   48 8.4  156.1   78.4  19:12   ( 41, -5)

2002  C/2002 V1 - 1-26-2003

C/2002 V1 (NEAT) is ~5 mg in Pegasus, best seen right after sunset in the West. The comet is brightening fast, and it may even be visible during daytime for a few hours at perihelion time, Feb. 18, 2003, with expected solar distance 0.1 AU ("Sungrazer"). May breakup - everything is possible! If nothing fancy happens, it will be hard to see it after the first week of February and when it comes back to N it will be telescopic. Read a

This photograph was obtained by Michael Jäger on 2003 January 20.72. It is a combination of two 7-minute exposures obtained with a 200/300 Schmidt camera and Kodak TP hypered film.


That means it is about 1/3rd the size of the sun!!!

About 6% of distance between Sun and the Earth

That Makes The Comet 4 Times Bigger than Jupiter!




If anyone knows symbolism, doesn't this look like a sperm going upstream?


NEAT C/2002V1

Comet Aquarius - Spark of Life -Conception of the Man-God

The celestial sperm makes it's way to the center of the ovum.

The NEAT comet has been estimated to have a coma head area. twice the size of Jupiter, and was passing Tuesday within a few million miles of the sun.

Comet returns after 37,000 years

by Fintan Dunne,


February 22, 2003 01:45 EST



A symbolic and scientific analysis  of the Comet NEAT C2002V1

The most significant aspect of the passage of the comet NEAT V1 has been its electromagnetic interaction with the Sun. Due to the deliberate masking of the SOHO satellite web images by NASA, we lack the definitive photographic evidence of this interaction, but we can infer it from the available pictures and the evidence of the solar wind, electron and proton graphs for the 18-19th February.

As detailed by James McKinney in his 21st February broadcast, there was in effect, a spark --an electrical discharge-- between the sun and the comet. This most singular event is a potent symbol of changes in the psycho-spiritual aspects of human development.

The period 3,500 BC to the birth of Christ saw a development of religious understanding which climaxed in the powerful symbological aspects of the recorded details of the life of Christ. I say this from a scientific and psycho-social perspective rather than an expressly Christian one. In deference to those uncomfortable with a Christian identification --who can validly regard Christ as an expression of the Christ-nature of man.

We can regard the lifetime of Christ therefore as the conception of the Christ nature. The two thousand year period since then can be regarded as the gestation period of that Christ nature. As we move now into the so-called Aquarian era we can expect archetypal symbols which express that movement and change.

The entry of the comet into the solar system, in symbolic terms is analogous to the entry of the sperm cell through the cell wall into the ovum itself. Both are the penetration of the circle. Then the sweep of the comet towards the sun is analogous to the movement of the sperm towards the center of the ovum to fuse with the cellular DNA and complete the conception.

The electrical discharge between the comet and sun represents the moment of completion of conception and is seen in art most graphically by the fingers of God and man meeting --in the Creation of Man by Michelangelo. Note that the fingers do not actually touch --but come close enough for that "spark" to leap the gap. This is not only an artistic device but is a matter of practical electric's. For example, this is what enables an automobile to ignite compressed gasoline and air by means of a spark plug.  (See:  THE WAY GOD CREATES)

We could happily divert here to talk in detail about the psycho-symbolic ramifications of the 20th century proliferation of hydrocarbon fuel-pressure-spark driven metal containers called cars. The metal of the automobile is akin to the armor of the knight and must be removed as Lancelet removed his armor to make love to Guenivere . So you can wave good-bye to the automobile -no matter what geopolitical significance gas may have presently. All this is a rich symbolic landscape in itself -but let's continue with our analysis of the comet.

The sun-comet spark is revisiting the conception of the Christ nature. Taking us back 2,000 years in symbolic terms. But there will not be another 2,000 year wait for the birth. In the speeded up perceptions of the modern era the wait will be much shorter. A new birth approaches. And the planets are already dancing to it's command.

Now this last statement might outrage those scientists mired in a deterministic view that ascribes to planets or comets no hint of psycho-spiritual motivations. What could lumps of rock care about the mind of man? Such attitude is the mark of a fool. How fallen is the mind behind the popular prevalent science.

There is nothing -shall we say- "airy-fairy" about this symbolic analysis. It is rooted not only in the archetypal analysis of Jung, but in the science of the space-hyperspace dynamic. Which is as "hard" a science as any rationalist could demand -though little understood.

Modern science has relegated humankind to a place as a lucky accidental development on an obscure planet in an obscure corner of a vast galactic firmament. What complete rubbish. Humanity is the center of the universe. And that is why the planets, stars and this NEAT comet all obey the laws of human development.

In fact, the stars are more like backdrop behind the stage of life here on Earth. Simply props to be wheeled about at will by the whims of human requirements. If this sounds strange then that simply shows how pervasive was the brainwashing of the modern era on our understanding.

In fact, the apparently vast galactic distances are an illusion. Everything that happens in the galaxy happens within the view and purview of man. If a supernova erupts on the other side of the universe -you can still see it from your own back yard. But it's light years away proclaims the scientist! What is light then but the vision of man's life? And what are years but the measure of it?

Hyperspace is wrapped around every point in space-time. And every point in space-time. is simultaneously wrapped around hyperspace. Which renders not only time an illusion -but space as well. Both are a perceptual illusion as transparent as the one which makes actors come alive at twelve frames a second on the cinema screen. Your eyes can't see faster than those twelfth of a second gaps. So you smooth the jerks of the projector gate into a fluid motion.

If you cannot see faster than a twelfth of a second what hope have you of seeing the oscillation of the spacetime-hyperspace system at speed of light times speed of light? That's how quickly the universe switches from every space-time. point being encapsulated by hyperspace to it's alternate: all of hyperspace being encapsulated in every point of space-time.

Distance is no object. And no object is distant. Not only are we not separated from the stars, we are not even separated from each other. We inhabit one body -we are one body. But don't tell the cinema audience. The illusion must be maintained. The Matrix must mold.

The comet did not interact with the Sun 93 million miles away. Because the Sun is right here on Earth. The globes of Earth, Moon and Sun all coexist in the same place in Hyperspace as assuredly as every-body inhabits the same body of space -or space of body. The astronauts did not need to journey to the moon -for they already walk on it's surface during every night's low-gravity dreams.

And the circle of the Sun is not a billion times larger than the circle of the ovum of a human female. It is the same size. Size doesn't matter you see. The circle of the ovum wall is the same size as the Sun. The circle of the moon surface is the same size as the lunar-cycle activated ovum. And the inner is the outer light squared times a second.

A comet did not kiss the sun this week. The comet came here to the surface of Earth. And hands of humanity reached out to receive the divine celestial spark. Many light-squared times we wrapped ourselves around God this week. Many light squared times we were enfolded in the arms of God.

The conception is complete. We await the birth.

Fintan Dunne

22 Feb. 2003 01:45 EST

Our Groundbreaking Coverage of the Cover-up of Comet NEAT C2002V1



S. H. Pravdo (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) announced that the 1.2-m Schmidt telescope at Haleakala had found a comet on 2002 November 6.60 in the course of the Near Earth Asteroid Tracking (NEAT) program. It exhibited a tail extending 10 arcsec toward PA 225°. With additional images on November 6.61 and November 6.62, the magnitude was estimated as between 17.1 and 17.5. The comet was confirmed by M. Blasco and S. Sanchez (Mallorca) on November 6.83 using the 0.40-m Schmidt telescope. They noted the coma was 15 arcsec across.

Historical Highlights

The first orbit was published by Brian G. Marsden of the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams on 2002 November 7 (MPEC 2002-V31 and IAUC 8011). Using 39 positions from November 6 and 7, he calculated a parabolic orbit with a perihelion date of 2003 February 18.59 and a perihelion distance of 0.0999 AU. Marsden confirmed the general correctness of the orbit on November 8 (MPEC 2002-V41) when 54 positions from November 6 to 8 revealed a perihelion date of 2003 Feb. 17.72 and a perihelion distance of 0.0987 AU. After more positions became available, the perihelion date was firmly established as February 18.30, the perihelion distance was given as 0.0993 AU, and the orbital period was about 37 thousand years. The orbit indicates the comet passed closest to Earth on December 24, 2002 (0.80 AU) and will be situated 5.7° from the sun around the time of perihelion.

Total magnitude estimates of this comet have been somewhat discordant during December, with the size of the telescope being a major factor. As the month began, most visual magnitude estimates were within the range of 12 to 12.5. The comet brightened to between 11 and 11.5 by December 8 and was between 10 and 10.5 by the 14th. Moonlight blocked the comet from view between December 15 and 21. Numerous observers began switching to large binoculars after December 22, at which time magnitude estimates became more consistent. The total visual magnitude was between 9.0 and 9.5 around the 24th and between 8.0 and 8.5 around the 29th.

Using observations obtained by the German comet section up to December 26, Andreas Kammerer analyzed the brightness trend of this comet and has stated that the rapid increase in brightness "is typical of a small nucleus." Although he said the trend indicates a possible maximum brightness of magnitude -15 at the time of perihelion in February, he predicted the following on December 27: "During the first period (which I expect will end during the next two weeks) the brightness increases rapidly. Thereafter the increase will noticably slow down and come to an end, followed by a rapid decline due to the disintegration of the nucleus." On December 23, John Bortle had wrote, "No comet as intrinsically faint as 2002V1 is presently thought to be has survived through a perihelion distance of 0.1 AU." In other words, it seems unlikely that this comet will survive long enough to become an impressive daylight object in February.

Observations during the first half of January were mostly affected by moonlight, with the moon passing just 12° from the comet on the 9th. On January 1 and 2, most observers reported magnitudes ranging from 7.6 to 8.6 and coma diameter estimates ranging from 6 to 12 arcmin. On the 14th and 15th, most observers reported magnitudes ranging from 6.8 to 7.5 and coma diameter estimates ranging from 5 to 12 arcmin. Occasional reports of a tail were received throughout this period. Taking the magnitude estimates of experienced observers, the comet appears to have continued to rapidly brightening throughout this period. The publication of a new orbit on January 15, indicates the comet is moving in a long-period orbit with a period of about 37 thousand years. This indicates this small comet has survived passages through perihelion in the past, and makes a breakup seem a little less likely.

Several interesting announcements were made during the second half of January. Pepe Manteca (Spain) obtained CCD images on the 17th which revealed an apparent tail disconnection event. The first naked-eye observation was reported by Michael Jäger (Austria) on January 20. He then gave the magnitude as 6.3. Jäger obtained a photograph which displayed a gas tail extending 2.5°. On the 23rd, an analysis by Seiichi Yoshida (Japan) indicated the comet was showing signs of slowing its rate of brightening.


C/2002 V1: What Will Happen?

The answer is...we haven't a clue. First, the facts.

This comet's perihelion is very close to the Sun...0.099 AU on February 18, 2003. That is really close...about 9 million miles. It isn't obvious that the comet will survive such a close approach to the Sun.

The comet has been brightening at an amazing rate. A "typical" long period comet brightens a rate of 2.5n~7.5. Brightness predictions usually assume 2.5n=10. The comet HAS BEEN brightening at 2.5n~25! Such a rate of brightening, if sustained until perihelion, would produce an unbelievable bright comet...NO ONE should expect the comet to continue brightening at such a rate. Such a high rate of brightening is sometimes seen in periodic comets, as they approach the Sun, when they are more than 1 AU from the Sun. As they approach closer, their rate of brightening drops dramatically. C/2002 V1 is still outside the Earth's orbit (as of 1/9/03).

So, what will happen?...As I said, we really don't know. However, from past experience, the rate of brightening will drop dramatically as the comet approaches the Sun...2.5n will probably be less than 10 and could approach 0 as the comet moves towards perihelion. The comet's brightness will also depend on whether it breaks-up as it approaches the Sun. The comet could be a total fizzle or it could put on a nice show. Although I am hoping for a nice show, I am expecting the comet to fizzle.


IAU Circular 8010 (November 6, 2002) announced the discovery C/2002 V1 by NEAT of a 16th magnitude comet. The preliminary orbit (MPEC V31, November 7, 2002) indicates that this comet will pass very close to the Sun on February 18, 2003. The perihelion distance is about 0.1 AU.

That is the good news...the bad news is that the comet appears to be intrinsically faint. The comet should brighten as it approaches the Sun. It should be picked up visually prior to the end of the year. Although the comet will brighten rapidly after that, its elongation will also decrease rapidly. It will still be a telescopic object as the elongation slips to under 30 degrees making it difficult to observe. A rough calculaton of peak brightness suggests that 1st-2nd magnitude will be the peak brightness... too faint to be seen close to the Sun (except by SOHO). The comet will race south and fade rapidly after perihelion. It is likely to be a telescopic object when it is picked up again.

Is it possible that the comet could be brighter? Yes. There is a real possibility that the comet could break up (as Comet West did in 1976). If the nucleus is large enough and the comet breaks up, the comet could brighten significantly. If the comet is small, the comet could just disintegrate into nothing like the SOHO comets [or like C/2002 O4 (Hoenig) apparently did]. Of course, it might not break-up at all...


Wednesday, 11 September, 2002

New 'moon' found around Earth

By Dr David Whitehouse

BBC News Online science editor

An amateur astronomer may have found another moon of the Earth. Experts say it may have only just arrived.

Much uncertainty surrounds the mysterious object, designated J002E3. It could be a passing chunk of rock captured by the Earth's gravity, or it could be a discarded rocket casing coming back to our region of space.

It was discovered by Bill Yeung, from his observatory in Arizona, US, and reported as a passing Near-Earth Object.

It was soon realised, however, that far from passing us, it was in fact in a 50-day orbit around the Earth.

Paul Chodas, of the American space agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, says it must have just arrived or it would have been easily detected long ago.

Calculations suggest it may have been captured earlier this year.

Moon or junk?

When he detected the object, Bill Yeung contacted the Minor Planet Center in Massachusetts, the clearing house for such discoveries, which gave it the designation J002E3 and posted it on their Near-Earth Object Confirmation webpage.

Soon, however, the object's motion suggested it was in an orbit around the Earth. Its movements had all the hallmarks of being a spent rocket casing or other piece of space junk.

But experts are not completely sure what exactly the object is.

Observations made by Tony Beresford in Australia indicate that the object's position does not match any known piece of space junk.

Observations made in Europe have failed to see any variations in brightness that might be expected from a slowly spinning metallic object.

Paul Chodas says the object must have arrived quite recently or else it would have been easily detected by any of several automated sky surveys that astronomers are conducting.

Its trajectory suggests that it may have been captured in April or May of this year, but there is still some uncertainty about this.

If it is determined that J002E3 is natural it will become Earth's third natural satellite.

Earth's second one is called Cruithne. It was discovered in 1986 and it takes a convoluted horseshoe path around our planet as it is tossed about by the Earth's and the Moon's gravity.

SIGHTING:  Comet sighting report

Date: Wednesday 2/19/03 11:45 am in North GA

This is the day the sun was a brilliant white - much much brighter than I had ever seen - it was also perihelion for Comet NEAT 2002 VI. It was a very hazy and cloudy morning due to the thick chemtrail activity overnight, and the sun itself could not be seen, only a blazing blob of light where the sun should be.

It was too bright to look anywhere near the general direction of the sun, even with very dark sunglasses. So I took the indirect approach. I closely studied the shadows ! Only rarely did the sun come out from the clouds, and then only briefly. But when it did, I noticed a distinct double shadow, with one much fainter being cast to the inside of the main shadow, but only on one side. Both shadows were extremely fuzzy - even more so than on typical heavy chemtrail days. And the most peculiar thing, was the second fainter shadow cast A DIFFERENT HUE than the other. The second fainter shadow had a bluish-grayish-whitish tint to it.

I deduced that the second fainter light source was what was causing the sunlight to have a washed out-whitish look to it all day. I believe this phenomena was caused by one of two things - 1) the tail of the comet or 2) the 2nd gigantic CME (that one at perihelion that NASA sent down the memory hole) blasting the tail and coma away from the comet, and away from the sun as well.

I would very much like to hear if anyone else was able to see this second shadow during the mid-day on the 19th.

I assumed everyone noticed it, but since I have not seen anyone post a similar observation, I am beginning to think I maybe I´m just strange that I notice very subtle things like this. But then again, I had been following the Comet NEAT story for a week prior to its perihelion, so I was specifically making any observations I could so I would have noticed it before most people I suppose.

Please advise with comments:

Marc aka SamwiseTheServant


From: Phil P

Date: Sun Feb 23, 2003 3:15 pm

Subject: Re: Earth Changes TV/Breaking News -

Something's Up With Comet "C/2002 V1"

I usually keep quiet about these "ECTV" posts, but this one has so many errors in it I had to speak up.

--- In, Mitch Battros <earthchanges@e...> wrote:

>" Something's Up With Comet "C/2002 V1"...02/23/03
> by Mitch Battros (ECTV)

> You can see comet "C/2002 V1" coming in from the north and coming  around the western limb. As the comet heads down towards the western side, we see a tremendous CME (coronal mass ejection) explode from the Sun, directly towards the comet. No one disputes this fact. "

I dispute it. The CME appears to aim right at the comet, but this is a two-dimensional image of a three-dimensional event. For example, two stars in the sky may appear to be right next to each, but really be at vastly different distances. They just happen to line up from our viewpoint.

The same is true about the comet and the CME. The CME might have been aimed well away from the comet, but just appear to line up with it. It may very well be aimed right at it, but we cannot know without some other angle on it.

This is exactly why I posted a page about image interpretation on my website. It is very difficult to simply look at a picture and figure out what's going on.


> This means the CME is directly Earth bound.

This is incorrect. You can tell when a CME is headed for us: it appears as a full circle around the Sun, and gets bigger. Think of it this way: it's like a smoke ring, headed for us. As it gets closer, it gets bigger, but the center stays centered on the Sun. The CME in question here is clearly off to the side.

If you see one going off the side of the Sun, it cannot be headed for us. Also, when a CME heads toward Earth, you get a big splatter of particles hitting SOHO, which gives you an image like this one:

No big splatter was seen from this one, so it's not headed for us.

> Now, lets consider the size of this comet. I had to take a double look when I located the diameter of comet "C/2002 V". It is approximately 176,000 miles across. This is twice the size of Jupiter. Twenty two times the size of Earth.

As we have discussed before here, this is wrong. The coma may be that big, but the solid part is probably very small, just a few miles across.

> Remember, the size of the last known "planet buster" asteroid 65 million years ago was about 6 miles in diameter. Any celestial orb 1 kilometer or (.6 miles) is considered a great danger to Earth.

That's grossly wrong. Any "celestial orb" *headed in our direction* would be a danger. This comet isn't headed anywhere near us.

> This would mean even a small particle from the tail of this comet could be devastating.

That too is incorrect, depending on your definition of "small". I guess he is thinking the solid part of the comet is huge, so small might be miles across. But in reality, the typical comet tail has very tiny pieces in it. Pieces as big as a grapefruit are considered large by astronomers! Meteor showers are caused by small particles coming off comets, and those produce a pretty show, but not much more.

> I do not believe there is any danger of a near miss, however, there is no doubt in my mind, a celestial orb of this size coming into our solar system will have an effect on every planet. Just what that will be, no one in the science community really knows.

This is wrong. Comets have very little impact on planets unless they directly hit one, or shower down meteors. These can damage or destroy satellites, but in general burn up harmlessly in the atmosphere.

It sounds to me like Mr. Battros has joined up in the conspiracy bandwagon that is attracting so many people right now.

But there's no  evidence of it.


Subj: [earthchanges] More About Comet Neat

Date: 2/27/2003 8:20:41 PM Pacific Standard Time

From: luckypig@XXX

Dear Friends,

Here's the latest from Dr. Michael Salla at American University. Some of the photo's aren't available. Wonder why?

Love and Light.



There is sufficient evidence to suggest that NASA has deliberately tampered with satellite imagery depicting a comet changing its flight path after interacting with the sun on February 18. Comet NEAT (C/2002 V1) was first observed by astronomers in November 2002 and was initially described as a 'small' comet that would come closest to the Earth on December 24, 2002, when it would be at 0.8 AU (note: 1 AU equals 93 million miles the distance between the Earth and the sun). Astronomers suggested that NEAT would brighten considerably as it approached its perihelion ( approach to the sun) of 0.1 AU (go to

By the time of its eventual arrival in the sun's vicinity, the precise size of the comet had become a matter of controversy as evident in a February 19, BBC report that described the comet as "unusual in that it is very large and very bright. In fact, it is the brightest comet ever observed by one of Soho's instruments." (

According to NASA flight projections, the comet would flyby the sun and continue its orbit without having an appreciable impact on either the sun or the Earth. Real time photographs of the comet by the SOHO satellite positioned between the Sun and Earth showed the comet's passage around the sun (for NASA's projected passage, see image on left). As predicted, the comet appeared very large, with some estimates of its coma (gases, ice, etc., surrounding the core) up to four times the size of Jupiter while having a planet sized core up to the size of Mercury.

On its passage past the sun on Feb 18, an enormous solar flame moves towards the comet as though to strike it in the fashion of a lightning bolt (image time-dated 2002/2/18 06:54). Just before what appears to be a critical impact, the images from SOHO's LASCO 3 corona graph, stop for a critical seven hours, when they resume, the next image (time dated one hour later), shows that the solar flame has disappeared, and what appears to be the remains of a crude cut and paste effort involving the comet (for more on evidence tampering see:

Subsequent images released by NASA showed the comet continuing its flight path without any significant interaction with the sun (image time-dated 2003/2/18 09:54) (to see NASA's animated sequence go to  

At this point, amateur astronomers on Web discussion boards began crying foul and were accusing NASA of image tampering. It should be pointed out that the processing of SOHO images occurs at the NASA Goddard Flight Center making it plausible that image tampering could occur using popular software packages such as Paint Brush. The period from when the comet reportedly exited the range SOHO's LASCO corona graphs, showed the sun resuming intense solar flare activity in the region where the comet had earlier been. The entire sequence of NEAT's passage appeared as in the following set of images released by NASA.

Discussion about comet NEAT would most likely have soon ended were it not for the following image

(time-dated 2003/02/20 23:42) released by SOHO on Feb 20, more than two days after the first 'tampered' image and when NEAT should have left the view of SOHO's LASCO corona graphs. The image showed what appeared to be the comet NEAT in an unanticipated position suggesting that it had changed direction and continued to be interacting with the sun. The next image (time-dated 2003/02/20 23:42) was delayed by 12 hours, but time dated 36 minutes later, showed no sign of the comet. Some astronomers suggested that the image depicting NEAT was still in the vicinity was an anomaly caused by such explainable factors as the SOHO satellite recording part of its own equipment discharge. For amateur astronomers, this was the smoking gun they had been looking for. Website discussion boards suddenly began to be systematically hacked making it difficult for news to get out and raising suspicion of NASA faking the fly by.

Surprisingly, a second set of images appeared almost two days later on Feb 22, that showed comet NEAT was still in the sun's vicinity and continuing to interact with it. The images came from SOHO's LASCO 2 corona graph which focuses on the vicinity much closer to the sun. These images showed an object, perhaps NEAT's core or segments of it, being ejected out of the sun (image time-dated 2003/02/22 19:31 - for animated version of this sequence of images go to

Amateur astronomers participating in a number of web page discussion boards again began to experience a high degree of hacking with boards going offline. This only added to growing accusations of foul play and suspicions about a NASA conspiracy to suppress the true nature of comet NEAT's precise location and interaction with the sun. Only to compound matters further, the critical LASCO instruments for recording the activities around the sun's corona, were closed down for the 4-day period from 24-27 February for repositioning the SOHO satellite. The cause was either routine 'Spacecraft Thruster Firing' as NASA claimed, or NASA was trying to prevent further leaks on NEAT's actual position.

The strongest evidence of image tampering are the images provided by the SOHO satellite which show what appears to be either the comet itself or its remnants in a variety of positions around the sun after NEAT should have left the sun's vicinity. Some have suggested that the released images were deliberately leaked by sympathetic NASA officials who wanted the general public to learn about the true nature of the comet's interaction with the sun.

Another significant piece of information is a set of images that showed what looked like an eye to the right of the comet just before the comet was apparently struck by a solar flare (image time-dated 2003/02/18 08:54). For those familiar with the Great Seal of the US (see reverse of one dollar bill), this was strikingly familiar with the Eye of Horus signifying Providence is watching over human affairs. There are three explanations for this mysterious eye. One the eye is just a fortuitous natural event captured on camera. Two, the eye was contrived by sympathetic NASA officials wanting to communicate that they are helping get information out. Or three, some 'external' intervention from a 'non-human' agency or intelligence has indeed occurred. Given that a significant number of individuals, groups, and organizations have been waiting for a cosmic event to signify 'divine intervention' in human affairs, then arguably, Comet Neat and the eye signifies that this has indeed occurred. If either of the latter two explanations is accurate, NASA may be expected to continue encountering difficulty in keeping news of comet NEAT's interaction with the sun from becoming public knowledge.

Did NASA Fake Satellite Imagery?

In summary, the primary evidence that NASA has faked the flyby of comet Neat lies in analysis of three sets images released by the SOHO satellite. The first is the February 18 image ( time-dated 2003/2/18 06:54) which shows evidence of tampering. The second is the February 20 image (time-dated 2003/02/20 23:42) which is the smoking gun that NEAT did not leave the sun's vicinity in the path predicted by NASA. The third are the February 22 images that show an object, possibly NEAT, being expelled from the sun (time-dated 2003/02/22 19:31). Circumstantial evidence is the following. Firstly, delays in release of images that depicted NEAT at critical stages in its passage. And second, hacking of amateur astronomer discussion boards that were attempting to analyze the data as it was emerging. When the evidence is analyzed, one is forced to choose between one of two choices. Either NASA is correct and nothing extraordinary has occurred other than the routine passage of a small but bright comet that will return again in 37,000 years. In this case, all the anomalous images and delays have plausible explanations. Alternatively, deliberate tampering of satellite imagery by NASA has occurred in order to suppress from public attention the true passage of Comet NEAT and its significance for humanity.

What strengthens the case for the latter explanation, is that some extraordinary weather patterns began to appear on February 24 that would be consistent with the intense solar activities beginning from February 18. For instance, it takes approximately about five days for coronal mass ejections from the sun to reach the earth. Aside from the snow and icy conditions that surprisingly appeared in the US on February 24, a foot of snow has fallen in Jerusalem and elsewhere in the Middle East on February 25! Children and police in the GAZA strip, and elsewhere in Israel/Palestine were having snowball fights, while heavy snowfalls were reported throughout the Middle East. Such bizarre weather might be simply welcomed as a respite from the turmoil of the Middle East or may signify something extraordinary has occurred. If indeed, the comet's interaction with the sun is having an effect on current weather patterns, then it is plausible to suggest that the NASA depiction of events is contrived.

Based on the evidence, it may be concluded that Comet NEAT was diverted in its interaction with the sun, with its present location and fligh path unknown to all, including NASA. This means that NEAT may continue to be in the vicinity of the sun thereby affecting weather patterns for some time yet. More significantly, when comet NEAT resumes its now disrupted flight path, there is uncertainty over where exactly its flight path will take it, and the amount of cometary debris it will bring in its wake. Comet Neat's passage has truly been an extraordinary event and despite the uncertainty over its significance, we might take comfort from the cosmic eye seen to be overseeing NEAT that perhaps Providence is indeed watching over humanity.

Copyright ©2003, Michael E. Salla, PhD

Forward as you wish. Permission is granted to circulate among private individuals and groups, post on all Internet sites and publish in full in all not-for-profit publications. Contact author for all other rights, which are reserved.

For on-line link to this article and for author information go to:

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Date: March 25, 2003 at 02:02:54

From: Viz,

Subject: What did I just see?

I'm still here, though more on the periphery now.

Here's my positional statement:

No giant planetoid, named Planet X or going by any other pseudonym, will coming zooming through our neck of the woods for the next 1700+ years. Although, during that time, several smaller, moon-like bodies and innumerable comets and asteroids will do so. And some of these will influence our planet in significant ways. Three of the passings will wreak havoc with the ways of man and nature -- while one will put an end to virtually all higher lifeforms on the surface of the planet and in the seas.

But, we have a ways to go before that happens. Information I was given previously led me to believe that a semi-collapsed, high-density body would be coming through our region in the late part of this past Winter. At any rate, before Spring. I was demonstrably shown an object on my computer screen and told that it represented the direction from which a number of events would originate. The date was May 26, 2002, and the object shown to me was Mercury.

Months later, I published the first article on Enigma and constructed an orbital solution diagram based upon the sketchy information I was given, with the position of Mercury as a focal point for the position of the object as it was at May 23, 2002 -- three days before the on-screen revelation. (I won't disclose who performed the demo.) Though I've had a fascination with physics for many years, I was never really taken with astronomy -- but I always appreciated the beauty of the stars and planets. So, I basically fumbled my way through the research I needed to do in order to complete the article. Actually, I learned an awful lot during this period, including how my interest in quantum physics related directly to the motion of the planets and stars I'd so long admired.

In early September, coming up on the late September publishing submission date for the October issue of GX, I got cold feet and began to feel that I had been duped. I was able to reach my contact and communicated these feelings. I received a call a few days later and told to go outside and look up. It seemed an innocent enough request, but I wasn't entirely sure, in a fit of unexpected paranoia, that someone wouldn't be waiting outside to take me away ...or something.

Anyway, after a few minutes of arguing with myself, I did manage to get out the door and, locking it behind me, I took a short stroll down my driveway to get away from the houselights. As soon as I got into the shade of the two maple trees that effectively block the neighbourhood streetlights from glaring at me, I saw something interesting; a light spot in the thin, high-altitude clouds over my head. As the clouds thinned even more, it was revealed as an oval shape, with a distinct orange-red colouring. What's more, there was a longish, smoky trail proceeding from it. At one point, the "smoky trail" broke as the brightness of the object suddenly waned -- only to continue anew as it rapidly brightened again. The broken part of the "tail" was still hanging there in the sky, but now a new tail began to grow. The soft, round spot in the sky grew even brighter, this despite the fact that clouds had begun to move in again. The motion was retrograde and the spectacle was truly astonishing. After another two hours or so, I found a witness to corroborate what I was seeing. The object had barely moved since the first observation, although it seemed to decline some small amount of minutes to the South. The starfield left it way behind.

I went back inside and put the finishing touches on my story, still completely unsure of why I was writing it, and still partially uncertain of what I was describing for the benefit of my audience.

The article ran. And then it ran again, this time in Nexus.

The wild gamut of e-mails I received was astounding. Some were from concerned folk wanting to know if I really had a bunker under the Canadian Shield. Some even inquired as to whether there was space available -- and at what price. Others scoffed. But the majority of correspondents were extremely interested to know more about the mysterious "Enigma". I haven't been able to answer everyone, but I think that this post might be a good start.

In late January, 2003, when I began to read about the comet that we now affectionately refer to as V1 (C/2002 V1), I ran the orbital solution for it against the track I'd created for Enigma. They looked different, except for the fact that when flattened straight out in the superior view, V1 was in the exact E-W oritentation as the proposed Enigma object. At May 23, 2003, like Enigma, you could draw a straight line through the Sun, Earth and "object".

Now, not being able to get in touch directly with my original source, I was left to wonder whether V1 and Enigma were actually the same thing. To this day, I am still wondering because a return call never came.

On February 18, 2003, V1 passed its perihelion point and was causing quite a stir in both the professional and lay astronomical communities. This was twenty days prior to the proposed Enigma-Earth close approach date.

Speculation on V1 was running rampant. Some people said that it was 2.5 times the size of Jupiter at the nucleus. Some said that was merely the coma diameter. NASA said the nucleus was 32 miles wide. Mitch Battros thought that NASA was caught fudging images because the projected flight path diagram issued by NASA happened to have a significant CME at the opposite side of the Sun from the one that did issue forth from Sol during V1's run-up to perihelion. Some people thought that the CME tore off the comet's tail. I worked to dispute some of the more outrageous claims, based upon my own study of V1 and posted my own measurements for its size and trajectory. I noted that, by the time it reached the edge of the SOHO frame, V1 had veered only slightly off the projected line; about 18,000 km at its widest point of divergence. I also posted that my latest estimate for nucleus size was about 96 miles in diameter; three times the NASA estimate and about one-quarter the final estimate issued by Jim McCanney.

I also made a prediction about the phenomenal tail, the brightest part of which (in LASCO C3) stretched almost FIVE solar diameters! Given the formidable discharge of matter from the object, I plotted courses for portions of the debris field which coincided with our own motion around the Sun. Roughly, this showed that, sometime between the end of April and late May, we would be running through a hotbed of particulate matter. The mean average date was May 7, 2003.

I've mentioned that the Enigma phenomenon is more like a group of events and that a number of bodies (of various sizes) are involved. I may never get to ask my source what happened to the primary object I called Enigma, but I got about ten "crank" phone calls on Sunday. It was really bugging me, so I went outside for a walk. As soon as I looked up, there was a familiar glow in the sky, once again partially obscured by clouds.

I've been wondering about those crank calls since Sunday.

Was the primary Enigma "body" really V1? I don't know at this point, but I know that there's going to be some satellite problems come May. There may even be some once-in-a-lifetime fireworks, and I hope, nothing more.

The 1700 year window was generally laid out by my source on the last day that we spoke. It's been one heck of a rollercoaster ride since mate May 2002, and I'm not sure exactly what to think right now. But I do know this... our path is charted through some really busy space between now and late Summer, with the crescendo coming between the end of April and late May.

bout this comet!

C/2002 X1 (LINEAR) is ~15.5 mg, slowly brightening. Perihelion will be on July 12, 2003 with 13.5 mg. The comet is in Cancer, up all night.

ut it in Sky & Telescope.

C/2002 Y1 (Juels-Holvorcem) . Observed brightness varies (for unknown reasons) between ~ 10 - 13 mg, in Bootes, visible after midnight (best before dawn). Perihelion is April 10, 2003 and after that it is only observable from the S hemisphere.


Object lights up night sky

From staff and wire reports

Dozens of people called tri-state police agencies and the National Weather Service office in Wilmington early today after a bright blue object streaked across the sky.

The Butler County Sheriff's Office said about 25 calls poured in from every corner of the county shortly after 1 a.m. about "a ball of fire" moving across the sky, a dispatcher said.

Some residents reported debris falling into their yards, but deputies who checked out the reports found nothing, the dispatcher said.

City of Hamilton Police, troopers at the Hamilton State Highway Patrol post and Brown County sheriff's deputies also received calls, as did the National Weather Service in Wilmington. The Clermont County Sheriff's Office said it received no calls.

The bright blue object also was reported in parts of Illinois and Indiana, moving from west to east.

Several homes in a Chicago suburb were apparently struck by chunks of the object.

Rock-like objects pierced the roofs of two homes in Park Forest, Ill., a suburb south of Chicago, said police Capt. Francis DioGuardi. No injuries were reported.

Another chunk landed on a residential street and broke apart, slightly damaging the siding of another home, he said.

National Weather Service offices throughout Indiana, and in Chicago and Wilmington, Ohio, received reports of the object, said Steve Haines, with the Indianapolis office.

Haines said the object was likely a meteor, but it could also have been falling space debris.

"We've got no official classification as to what it was," said Casey Sullivan, an employee with the Weather Service in Illinois.

Jim Kaplan with the Romeoville, Ill., office of the Weather Service said he was outside checking a rain gauge when he saw a flash of light in the sky.

"First, it got very bright and the sky lit up," Kaplan said. "You could see something streaking across the sky and breaking up into glowing chunks as it went from west to east."

In Indiana, police agencies as far north as Jasper County, in northwest Indiana, and as far south as Evansville received calls from people who had seen the object.

A dispatcher at the state police post in Peru said calls came from Grant, Fulton and Wabash Counties.

Publication Date: 03-27-2003


Possible meteor, space debris eyed in Indiana sky

Staff and Wire Report

March 27, 2003

Several homes in a Chicago suburb were apparently struck by chunks of a meteor after people in Indiana and Illinois reported seeing a bright blue light in the midnight sky, police said.

Rock-like objects pierced the roofs of two homes in Park Forest, Ill., a suburb south of Chicago, said police Capt. Francis DioGuardi. No injuries were reported.

Another chunk landed on a residential street and broke apart, slightly damaging the siding of another home, he said.

People in Indiana, Illinois and Ohio called police agencies about 1 a.m. today to report seeing a bright blue light in the sky. Sgt. Jeff Mangiaracina with the Sheriff's Department in Will County, Ill., said he received calls from as far away as Wisconsin.

Locally, the Indianapolis office of the National Weather Service received dozens of calls. “The phones just lit up for about two hours,” said meteorologist John Ogren.

Callers reported seeing something streaking down to earth.

“We had a lot of people reporting that they heard a sonic boom but nothing about finding anything falling down,” Ogren said.

Other National Weather Service offices throughout Indiana, and in Chicago and Wilmington, Ohio, received reports of the object.

Steve Haines with the Indianapolis office said the object was likely a meteor, but it could also have been falling space debris.

"We've got no official classification as to what it was," said Casey Sullivan, an employee with the Weather Service in Illinois.

Jim Kaplan with the Romeoville, Ill., office of the Weather Service said he was outside checking a rain gauge when he saw a flash of light in the sky.

"First, it got very bright and the sky lit up," Kaplan said. "You could see something streaking across the sky and breaking up into glowing chunks as it went from west to east."

In Indiana, police agencies as far north as Jasper County, in northwest Indiana, and as far south as Evansville received calls from people who had seen the object.

A dispatcher at the state police post in Peru, about 65 miles southwest of Fort Wayne, said calls came from Grant, Fulton and Wabash counties.


Posted on Thu, Mar. 27, 2003

Meteor lights up Midwestern sky, showering homes with rocks


Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS - The midnight sky flashed an eerie blue early Thursday over four Midwestern states as a meteorite exploded in the atmosphere, sending rocks as big as softballs crashing through some houses.

Residents in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Wisconsin reported seeing the disintegrating meteorite flash across the sky about midnight. Police were soon deluged with reports of falling rocks striking homes and cars.

Chris Zeilenga, 42, of Beecher, Ill., said he and his wife, Pauline, were watching TV war coverage around midnight.

"The sky lit up completely from horizon to horizon. We've seen lightning storms, but this was nothing like that," he said. "A minute or so later the house started rumbling and we heard all these tiny particles hitting the house."

Outside his home about 30 miles south of Chicago, Zeilenga found tiny gray and black pieces of stone. He didn't realize their origin until he heard people talking about meteorites as he rode the morning train to work in Chicago. "When I heard that I thought, 'That's what it was!'"

Kenneth and Karen Barnes of Park Forest, Ill., told WGN-TV in Chicago they were sleeping when a 5-pound meteorite crashed into their living room. Thursday morning their son spotted a hole in the ceiling.

"I didn't know what to think, so we went looking through the house for it and found it," Kenneth Barnes said.

Commander Mike McNamara of the Park Forest Police Department said about 60 pieces of space rock ranging from gravel-sized to softball-sized were brought in to the police station.

He said three homes in Park Forest were damaged, along with the fire department and possibly one car. Two homes in the nearby town of Matteson also were struck by meteorite pieces.

Paul Sipiera, a professor of geology and astronomy at Harper College in Palatine, Ill., spent Thursday examining dozens of pieces of meteorites and plotting where they fell. The largest he saw was about 7 1/2 pounds.

He said the debris field appears to cover a path about 80 miles long by 20 miles wide from north of Bloomington, Ill., to Chicago's south side and possibly part of northwestern Indiana.

He said all of the pieces came from a stony meteorite he estimates was about the size of a Volkswagen bug when it exploded as it plunged into Earth's atmosphere.

A spokesman for the U.S. Strategic Command in Omaha, Neb., said the defense installation was not tracking any manmade space objects in the area at the time that the light show appeared over the Midwest.

Sipiera said it's very rare for meteorites to fall on populated areas.

"For me, it's a dream come true," he said. "I always tell my wife that when I die, I hope I get hit in the head by a meteorite flying through the roof and it came pretty close," he said.


Meteor Shower Scary, Stunning & 'Kind Of Exciting'

Scientists Call For All Meteor Fragments

POSTED: 11:47 a.m. CST March 27, 2003

CHICAGO -- A flash in the sky and the rumbling sounds of a faraway explosion alerted hundreds of south suburban residents Wednesday night.

Reporting those details to authorities, callers flooded police departments, fire departments and various television stations overnight. NBC5's Kim Vatis, reporting from Park Forest, said it turned out to be a meteor shower "that forced a shower of panic calls" to authorities all over the Midwest.

In Park Forest, some people who were in their living rooms watching war coverage, thought the United States was under attack with the amazing light show produced by the meteors. It started with a blast of light and a thunderous sound, witnesses told Vatis. Then, chunks of meteorites dropped from the sky. One of the larger segments fell through the roof of a family home and into the bedroom where a young boy was sleeping.

"Then all the sudden a big rock came down, right through that hole there," Noe Garza said, pointing to the hole through which one could see the branches of a nearby tree. "It happened too quick. I didn't know what to think and now I'm thinking, afterwards, you know? Wow."

Vatis said that the force of the meteor not only ripped through the roof and ceiling of the house, but it shattered the window, ricocheted off the windowsill and struck the mirrored closet door on the other side of the room.

"I don't think anyone's going to believe me," said the man's son, explaining why he was bringing a small bag of fragments to school with him.

Roberta Garza laughed as she showed Vatis where a meteor had gone through the plate glass of her home.

"It's kind of exciting, I guess," she said.

"Where's my insurance agent," quipped her husband nearby.

Numerous homes and cars in Park Forest were slightly damaged, Vatis said. The light show itself was overwhelming, witnesses said, and in this time of war, particularly frightening.

"I saw an unusually bright flash of light that seemed to be coming from the west. It lasted about 10 seconds and then, all the sudden, it was like instant daylight," said Officer Bob Boyle or the Park Forest police.

"At first I thought it was gunfire and then it sounded like thunder, and then it rattled everything," another officer added. Vatis said local scientists are now in a frenzy, saying that the meteorites predate earth and create a celestial light show as they penetrate the earth's atmosphere.

The energy locked up in the object itself hitting the atmosphere ... releases it in the form of heat. It's an explosion of light," explained Paul Sipiera, a meteorite researcher.

Scientists are urging people to turn over all fragments of the meteors they find, as study of them could help explain the origin of the solar system.

This is the ninth meteor shower recorded in Illinois, Vatis said, the first one being recorded in 1928.

Copyright 2003 by All rights reserved.


Friday, March 28, 2003, 6:35 a.m.


Associated Press Writer

CHICAGO (AP) -- A meteorite exploded in the midnight sky over the Midwest early Thursday, causing a "shower of stones" as big as shot puts to rain down south of Chicago.

"This guy's house had a hole in the roof, a hole in the kitchen floor and it (a chunk of rock) was in the basement on a pile of clothes," said Mark Hammergren, an astronomer with Chicago's Adler Planetarium who spent Thursday collecting chunks of space rocks with three other astronomers. "It was about 10 pounds and the size of a 16-inch softball."

"This is pretty rare," he said after visiting the home in south suburban Park Forest. "There are three reports every year of property damage due to meteorites around the world."

Hammergren said he thinks a meteor the size of a large television set exploded about 20 miles up sometime around midnight. That was large enough for people in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Wisconsin to see, and soon police departments were being deluged with a flood of phone calls.

One of those who saw -- and felt -- the meteor shower was Chris Zeilenga of Beecher, a community about 30 miles south of Chicago. "The sky was lit up completely from horizon to horizon," said Zeilenga, 42. "We've seen lightning storms, but this was nothing like that," he said. "A minute or so later the house started rumbling and we heard all these tiny particles hitting the house."

Jim Kaplin saw the same thing. "First, it got very bright and the sky lit up," said Kaplin, who was outside the Romeoville office of the National Weather Service where he works when he saw the meteor shower. "You could see something streaking across the sky and breaking up into glowing chunks as it went from west to east."

Hammergren said the bulk of what he called a "shower of stones" landed in a three-mile swath in the area of Park Forest, Matteson and Olympia Fields. Three homes in Park Forest, where police said about 60 pieces of space rocks were turned in to the department, were damaged, along with the fire department. There were no reports of injuries, said Park Forest Police Capt. Francis DioGuardi. In nearby Matteson, there were reports that two homes were hit by meteorite pieces.

There had been some speculation that what had fallen to the ground might be space debris. But Hammergren said the chunks of debris he saw were definitely pieces of meteor. He said precisely just what kind will have to wait for a more detailed analysis.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

"According to this story in the Chicago Tribune or this article, a meteor estimated to be the size of a 'Volkswagen bug' exploded over the Midwest around midnight yesterday morning. The resulting small meteorites hit homes causing some damage. The largest meteorite collected was 7.5 pounds. So why do astronomers always compare the size of meteors to Volkswagen bugs?"




Updated February 24th...

Please note that we are requesting people who are taking this story seriously to follow the preparation steps issued by the US government on February 19th at Below is our own 'summary' of what you will need to do to protect yourself (please note that there is no protection against large object falling or massive flooding/quakes...this is a plan to deal with the evident risks that can be extremely destructive if no preparation is sought) .

  1. Have access to 'clean' air.

From the details that have been gained about this planet size comet, it seems that the greatest 'threat' will not be from the comet head itself (that would be an extinction event) but from the 'tail' of the comet which is 000's of miles in length and is full of dust & debris (see photo). If the tail comes into contact with earth, then we can expect great levels of dust/debris to fill the skies for a number of days. The Homeland Security Department advises (under the guise of 'terror' threat) that people should seek 'clean-air' by sealing doors and windows with duct tape and using heavy duty plastic bags. The person should also try to keep the nose/mouth clear of any dust  (you should have a dust/comfort mask handy). Read the steps for 'clean air' as advised by the Homeland Security Department.

  1. Have non-perishable food & water.

Now that you have prepared yourself & your family against the threat of 'dust/debris', then the 2nd most important step is to stock on non-perishable food (since electricity may be out) and bottled water for a minimum period of three days (this is the information taken from the Homeland Security Department, but taking precaution of up to seven days maybe very wise).

  1. Have lighting and first aid kit handy.

Since you may have to 'stay-put' for 3-7 days, then you should be prepared with emergency lighting (candles, flashlights, kerosene lamps) as well as have a basic first aid kit to treat any discomforts/injury that may occur.

  1. Have a recovery plan.

If all has gone well and you and your loved ones have survived the worst of the comet passing, then you will need to  start rebuilding your lives once again. Try to agree with your relatives beforehand on a specific 'meeting place' if they are located in other regions or towns from you. Do not expect the phones or communications to be back up soon after such an even (if at all), so plan with that in mind. Some tips on this can also be found at the Homeland Security page:

Low and behold...after we had given-up that we would ever see the planet sized comet due to the photo alterations of SOHO, the comet is emerges again unexpectedly in the C2 images above (C2 is x-ray imaging which can be seen live at SOHO website) dated February 22nd...SOHO had obviously not expected this to occur or else these shots would not be with us now (see movement away from the sun to the bottom of the photos). The problem is clear, this comet is nowhere near the trajectory that NASA had initially given.


We have witnessed far smaller and less relevant comets being given more publicity and hype...yet when a few thousand year event takes place with a comet larger than a small planet (quote: "It is far the brightest and largest comet seen," Paal Brekke, SOHO deputy project scientist, told"), there is MEDIA COVERAGE SILENCE!.

This when added to the data manipulation and silence from NASA and other observatories leads us to one conclusion...that this event has everyone in authority extremely scared and that they have no idea what may be the final results of its trajectory or its passing.

Silence is a strategy that a top advisor to the US government has already stated (read story) would be the policy for impact or dangerous objects moving through space...We may be seeing this policy currently being enforced.

Here are some quotes from the Homeland Security Office 1-day after the comet changed its trajectory being influenced by the a massive solar flare (this happened on the 18th of February...Home Land Security issued their warning on the 19th of February).

Here are some 'give-away' quotes from the Homeland Security website:

Do you think that terrorism will cause 'natural' disaster or 'debris in the air'!!! (that is a giveaway).

The only advice to readers is: BE VIGILANT/BE PREPARED

Please take the warnings issued by the Homeland Security VERY SERIOUSLY (even if you are not in the US)...Follow the steps we have listed above by having 'clean-air', have supply of food and drinking water for 3-7 days, have extra blankets and an aid kit, have lighting equipment (flashlight/gas lamps), and most importantly, have a PLAN for what you will do after such an even takes place (if it does take place)...Where will you meet with your loved ones, where will you move to if the services are all disabled, etc...

This event and information is being shared amongst common people on the following discussion places:

Date: March 07, 2003 at 15:07:29

From: Ley Ozarks Mo,

Subject: Comets dream of a child

My son who is now 13 had this dream on 04/04/97, during this time he had alot of activity in his room , voices, lights ect, we would go check and he would be fast asleep....We lived in Maryland at the time, and he referes to us living in a trailer somewhere else, We know live in a trailer in Missouri.........I would appreciate some insight to some of the content, this was copied word for word when he was 7 1/2


I was hunting Eater eggs.We lived somewhere else,in the other trailer.I opened a cupboard door and nothing the I crossed my eyes and saw bones. the the bones dissapeared then a man appeared he was big with gray hair and blue eyes and had a red uniform from a battle. But you couldnt see his legs, they were just a blue slot and hes floating. I asked him if he was a genie, he said no, then I asked him if his name is God, he said there are more Gods than one, That when you dont have anymore lives, then you become a God. Thats why there are so many.He said he lived in 1890's or something 90's and he was told a comet was coming when he was alive..When he was alive his name was Michael. He said my imaginary friend was his brother."my imaginary friend was with me" The man said his name now was nothing we ever heard before"Jordan's imaginary friends name was Samuel"..He said something was coming and would hit where no one lived but lizards.Maybe the desert. ...He said to make circles of 150,000 feet where there are no people but don't move everyone to one place cause then maybe the comet would hit there...We arent living here when it happens,I think maybe I am grown up or it is with the 8th century or 8 something,maybe the next century.It doesnt hit where we are living. You might have to go the desert or the mountians but not near any creeks cause when it hits the whole planet might shake and splash everyone off!!! He said he is not an illusion , this is the future...Then he said it was time for me too wake up ...Jordans interpretation was" when it hits it will spin the earth maybe 50 miles", and he showed me the world turning over with his hands. and rolled his hands like he was rolling a ball..



C/2001 Q4

Comet Could Brighten Night Skies Next Spring

Date: 5/28/2003

"Mark your calendars for this time next year, when a rare, bright  naked-eye comet might grace the spring evening sky. Then again, maybe not.

Back on Aug. 28, 2001, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) announced the discovery of a new comet spotted by Near Earth Asteroid Tracking team at Palomar Observatory in southern California. Like several other comets, this one has come to be called NEAT, the acronym for the discovery program.

The comet should not be confused with another that recently looped around the Sun and that also bore a NEAT moniker. That comet NEAT was designated C/2002 V1. The comet NEAT anticipated for next year has been designated as C/2001 Q4.

The potential

The potential for a bright comet show for the spring of 2004 is based on an improved orbit that places the new comet NEAT’s closest point to the Sun, or perihelion, at a distance of 89.4 million miles (143.9 million kilometers) on May 15, 2004.

The comet was nearly a billion miles (1.6 billion kilometers) from the Sun when it was discovered. At that time it was shining at magnitude 20, or more than 398,000 times dimmer than the faintest star visible to the unaided eye. Most comets would be completely invisible at such a tremendous distance, even to the telescope that found it, so the implication is that Comet NEAT C/2001 Q4 may be an unusually large and active object.

The comet has brightened noticeably since its discovery, but is still very faint -- only about magnitude 14, still some 1,600 times fainter than the threshold of naked-eye visibility. It is located within the faint constellation of Fornax, the Furnace. It cannot be observed at the present time, since this part of the sky is only above the horizon during the daytime.

Sizzle of fizzle?

Most new comets are notoriously unpredictable, and there is no guarantee that comet NEAT won’t fizzle. The big question is whether this activity is the sign of a truly great comet or just a temporary flare-up of an ordinary one.

A "new" comet in a parabolic orbit – that is, a comet that has never passed near the Sun before – may be covered with very volatile material, such as frozen carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and carbon monoxide. These ices tend to vaporize far from the Sun, giving a distant comet a surge in brightness that can raise unrealistic expectations. Several such flops appeared last century.

If you are at least 35 years old, you might remember the big build-up – and subsequent letdown – for comet Kohoutek during the Christmas season of 1973.

Kohoutek was discovered more than nine months before it was due to sweep around the Sun. At the time of its discovery in March 1973 it appeared unusually bright for a comet so far out from the Sun (more than half a billion miles). Some touted it as potentially the "Comet of the Century." Most astronomers hoped that if it was so bright and unusual at its discovery, that it would keep on being bright and unusual as it neared the Sun.

But it merely remained unusual rather than getting very bright.

In fact, except at the time of its perihelion, when astronauts on board the Skylab Space Station caught a glimpse of it shining brilliantly next to the Sun, to earthbound observers Kohoutek hardly appeared very bright at all. Many who looked skyward – often through light polluted city skies – could barely perceive the object without binoculars or telescopes.

Comet Cunningham in 1940-41 and Comet Austin in 1990 proved similarly disappointing.

Not-so-NEAT calculations

On the other hand, a comet that is in an elliptical orbit and returning to the Sun from the distant past has probably shed its highly volatile materials, so what we would be seeing is the true underlying level of its activity. Comet Hale-Bopp, which brightened the night sky during the late winter and spring of 1997, fell into this class.

Unfortunately, as of this writing, calculations by orbital experts suggests that Comet NEAT may be traveling in a parabolic orbit, hinting that it may indeed be a new comet, like Kohoutek. This however, doesn’t automatically mean that Comet NEAT will fizzle-out, since not all-new comets become duds. Comet Arend-Roland is an outstanding exception, a first-timer that put on a spectacular show in April 1957.

If it indeed stays on its current prescribed path, Comet NEAT will pass closest to the Earth on May 7, 2004 at a distance of just under 30 million miles (48.3 million kilometers). It will appear to rise out of the evening twilight during the first week of May 2004 and move northward from Canis Major, through Cancer by midmonth and on into Ursa Major by month’s end.

And another thing …

If the prospects for one bright comet doesn’t excite you, how about two?

On Oct. 29, 2002, The IAU announced the discovery by the LINEAR survey of a comet that may also become a bright naked-eye object in May 2004.

Designated C/2002 T7 (LINEAR), the comet is currently shining at around 15th magnitude. The latest orbit suggests that it will come closest to the Sun on April 23, 2004 at a distance of about 57 million miles (91 million kilometers). Comet LINEAR, however, appears to be on projected May 2004 track that would take it eastward through the constellations of Pisces, Cetus, Eridanus, Lepus and Canis Major. This would be too low in the sky and too close to the Sun, except perhaps for those at far-southerly latitudes such as Australia, South Africa.

Should either comet evolve into a bright first-magnitude object as some forecasts suggest, either or both could end up becoming striking sights one year from now, with NEAT adorning our evening sky soon after sunset and LINEAR appearing first in the morning and then later in the evening.

But if either or both turns out to be duds, they will appear as nothing more than fuzz-balls in small telescopes.

We’ll just have to wait and see. One thing is for sure: the countdown

29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 1 is ~13.5 mg. A supposedly 15 mg object on a nearly circular orbit at a ~ 5.7 AU, with sudden outbursts. It is in Caparicornus and unobservable until April.

30P/Reinmuth 1 is ~15 mg, may brighten a little more. Perihelion was Dec. 24, 2002, and T=7.3 years. Rises late night and best observed at/after midnight high up in Leo.

81P/Wild 2 is ~14.5 mg, slowly getting brighter. Perihelion will be Sept. 26, 2003 at 1.6 AU, and T=6.4 years. Best observed before midnight high up in Taurus.

154P/Brewington is ~12.5 mg in Aquarius, not far from Uranus and is best seen right after sunset low in the West, a difficult object. Read about it in Sky & Telescope. Perihelion is Feb 19, 2003 but will never be brighter th

155P/Shoemaker 3 is ~15 mg, as bright as it gets. Perihelion was Dec. 14, 2002, and T=17.1 years. Rises late night and best observed at/after midnight high up in Leo.

Giant asteroid could hit Earth in 2014

Tuesday, September 2, 2003

LONDON, England (Reuters) -- A giant asteroid is heading for Earth and could hit in 2014, U.S. astronomers have warned British space monitors.

But for those fearing Armageddon, don't be alarmed -- the chances of a catastrophic collision are just one in 909,000.

Asteroid "2003 QQ47" will be closely monitored over the next two months. Its potential strike date is March 21, 2014, but astronomers say that any risk of impact is likely to decrease as further data is gathered.

On impact, it could have the effect of 20 million Hiroshima atomic bombs, a spokesman for the British government's Near Earth Object Information Centre told BBC radio.

The Centre issued the warning about the asteroid after the giant rock was first observed in New Mexico by the Lincoln Near Earth Asteroid Research Program.

"The Near Earth Object will be observable from Earth for the next two months and astronomers will continue to track it over this period," said Dr Alan Fitzsimmons, one of the expert team advising the Centre.

Asteroids such as 2003 QQ47 are chunks of rock left over from the formation of the solar system 4.5 billion years ago. Most are kept at a safe distance from the Earth in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.

But the gravitational influence of giant planets such as Jupiter can nudge asteroids out of these safe orbits and send them plunging towards Earth.



Asteroid alert is another false alarm

Fears that a mile-wide asteroid could be due to hit the Earth in 2014 have turned out to be a false alarm.

Scientists initially calculated that there was a 1 in 909,000 chance of a collision on March 21.

Such an impact would have an explosive force eight million times more powerful than the atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima, Japan, at the end of the Second World War.

But new observations collected on Monday night have now "eliminated" the risk, say experts at the American space agency Nasa.

A spokesman at Nasa's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, said there was still a 1 in 2.2 million chance of an impact sometime in the next century.

Story filed: 18:47 Wednesday 3rd September 2003

Closest asteroid yet flies past Earth

18:17 02 October 03 news service

An asteroid about the size of a small house passed just 88,000 kilometres from the Earth by on Saturday 27 September - the closest approach of a natural object ever recorded. Geostationary communication satellites circle the Earth 42,000km from the planet's centre.The asteroid, designated 2003 SQ222, came from inside the Earth's orbit and so was only spotted after it had whizzed by. The first sighting was on Sunday 28 by the Lowell Observatory Near-Earth Object Search program in Arizona, US. Amateur astronomer Peter Birtwhistle of Great Shefford, Berkshire, UK, then photographed it on Monday 29. This provided data that helped Brian Marsden, of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, to calculate its orbit. The asteroid's 1.85-year orbit is quite eccentric, indicating it cannot be a man-made object, Marsden says. He estimates the asteroid measured less than 10 metres. This is too small to have posed a danger to Earth, although it would have made a spectacular fireball had it entered the atmosphere.

The passage came at about 2300 GMT, only 10 hours after a bright fireball streaked over the Orissa region of India. Indian villagers have found pieces of the meteorite, which reportedly cause two house fires. However, this event was not connected to the fly past of 2003 SQ222, says Marsden.The previous record for closest approach of an asteroid - 108,000km measured from the centre of the Earth - was set in 1994 by another 10m object named 1994 XM1.

But the third-closest approach - at 120,000km - was object 2002 MN, which was about 80m in diameter. If on target, that could have exploded in the Earth's lower atmosphere and devastated a couple of thousand square kilometres on the ground.

Another small asteroid, 2003 SW130, missed the Earth by 160,000km on 19 September, making it a busy month for asteroid watchers.

Jeff Hecht


Above: The elliptical orbit of asteroid Hermes (red) brings it to the inner solar system every 777 days

1980 wasn't the first time Hermes had sailed by unremarked. Hermes is a good-sized asteroid, easy to see, and a frequent visitor to Earth's neighborhood. Yet astronomers had gotten into the habit of missing it. How this came to be is a curious tale, which begins in Germany just before World War II:

On Oct. 28, 1937, astronomer Karl Reinmuth of Heidelberg noticed an odd streak of light in a picture he had just taken of the night sky. About as bright as a 9th magnitude star, it was an asteroid, close to Earth and moving fast--so fast that he named it Hermes, the herald of Olympian gods. On Oct. 30, 1937, Hermes glided past Earth only twice as far away as the Moon, racing across the sky at a rate of 5 degrees per hour. Nowadays only meteors and Earth-orbiting satellites move faster.

Plenty of asteroids were known in 1937, but most were plodding members of the asteroid belt far beyond Mars. Hermes was different. It visited the inner solar system. It crossed Earth's orbit. It proved that asteroids could come perilously close to our planet. And when they came, they came fast.

Reinmuth observed Hermes for five days. Then, to make a long story short, he lost it.

Hermes approaches Earth's orbit twice every 777 days. Usually our planet is far away when the orbit crossing happens, but in 1937, 1942, 1954, 1974 and 1986, Hermes came harrowingly close to Earth itself. We know about most of these encounters only because Lowell Observatory astronomer Brian Skiff re-discovered Hermes… on Oct. 15, 2003. Astronomers around the world have been tracking it carefully ever since. Orbit-specialists Steve Chesley and Paul Chodas of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have used the new observations to trace Hermes' path backwards in time, and so they identified all the unnoticed flybys.

Above: This movie recorded by Lowell Observatory astronomer Brian Skiff shows Hermes moving among the stars in Oct. 2003. [more]

"It's a little unnerving," says Chodas. "Hermes has sailed by Earth so many times and we didn't even know it."

"Hermes' orbit is the most chaotic of all near-Earth asteroids," he adds. This is because the asteroid is so often tugged by Earth's gravity. Hermes has occasional close encounters with Venus, too. In 1954 the asteroid flew by both planets. "That was a real orbit scrambler," Chodas says. Frequent encounters with Earth and Venus make it hard to forecast Hermes' path much more than a century in advance. The good news is that "Hermes won't approach Earth any closer than about 0.02 AU within the next hundred years." We're safe for now.

Using the JPL ephemeris, we can look back and figure out what happened in 1937 when the asteroid was lost. With hindsight, it's understandable:

Reinmuth first spotted Hermes approaching Earth from the direction of the asteroid belt. At first it was easy to see because the asteroid's sunlit side was facing Earth. Speedy Hermes soon crossed Earth's orbit, however, and began turning its night side toward us. Asteroids are nearly as dark as charcoal, and their night sides are very dim. By Nov. 3rd, six days after its discovery, the asteroid had faded from 9th to 21st magnitude, a factor of 60,000. "Hermes was also heading into the sun's glare, which only made matters worse," notes Chodas. Hermes literally vanished.

No one seemed to care, not much. In 1937, World War II was about to begin in Europe, so people had a lot on their minds. Hermes failed to impress.

Says Chodas: "Astronomers of the day were somewhat biased, perhaps. They had convinced themselves that collisions were too rare to consider. Hermes didn't change their opinion because catastrophism was not in vogue."

It's in vogue now--largely because of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 (SL9), an object discovered by people hunting for Hermes. Found in 1993 by Gene and Carolyn Shoemaker and David Levy, SL9 hit Jupiter on July 14, 1994, with much of the world watching on CNN. Long before the collision, SL9 had been torn apart by Jupiter's powerful tides. The largest fragments, coincidentally about the same size as asteroid Hermes, exploded with such force when they struck that dark clouds formed in Jupiter's atmosphere as large as Earth itself.

The impact site of of one of comet SL9's fragments on Jupiter's cloud-tops. [more]

A message from Jupiter: Catastrophes happen.

"Gene always felt that Hermes should have done more to excite the world than it did at the time" recalls David Levy. "Indeed, he and his wife Carolyn were always hoping to find it." Shoemaker was a visionary who realized long before most others did that asteroids and comets posed an ongoing threat to Earth. In the late 1970's he and a few colleagues began to hunt for near-Earth objects using an 18-inch telescope at the Palomar Observatory. For a long while it was the only such survey on Earth. They discovered dozens of asteroids and comets, including SL9--but not Hermes. "When Hermes passed by Earth in 1986 (an encounter identified post-facto by Chodas) it should have been an easy target for us," notes Levy. "But the telescope was down for repairs." Shoemaker died in 1997 not knowing how close he came.

Now backyard astronomers around the world can do something Gene Shoemaker never did--see Hermes.

Hermes is fast approaching Earth, and on Nov. 4th it will pass by our planet 18 times farther away than the moon. Already the asteroid is about as bright as a 13th magnitude star--an easy target for 8-inch telescopes equipped with CCD cameras. Where should you point your 'scope? Consult the JPL Ephemeris for details.

Left: This double-peaked radar echo obtained at the Arecibo radio observatory in Puerto Rico reveals asteroid Hermes to be a binary. [more]

In recent days a group of NASA-supported astronomers led by Jean-Luc Margot of UCLA have pinged the asteroid with radar pulses from the giant Arecibo antenna in Puerto Rico. Hermes, it turns out, is a double asteroid--two space rocks orbiting one another, each about 400 meters across. No one knows how Hermes came to be this way. Margot and colleagues hope to learn more when the asteroid passes by on Nov. 4th as they continue their observations using both Arecibo and NASA's Goldstone radar.

Now that Hermes has our attention, it might teach us a few things after all.

2004 FH   Small asteroid zooms past Earth
Space rock was spotted Monday; no threat of collision

The asteroid known as 2004 FH has an orbit that takes it well within the moon's distance, as this graphic shows. Earth's gravitational pull deflects its path by 15 degrees.

By Robert Roy Britt
Senior Science Writer

An asteroid passed closer to Earth than any previously recorded, but the planet was not at risk, NASA scientists announced.

he space rock is about 100 feet (30 meters) wide. It passed just 26,500 miles (43,000 kilometers) over the southern Atlantic Ocean at 5:08 p.m. ET Thursday. That's about 3.4 times Earth's diameter. It's also just beyond geostationary weather satellites, which orbit at an altitude of 22,300 miles (35,700 kilometers).

Scientist said experienced backyard stargazers should have been able to see it with binoculars or small telescopes from much of Asia, Europe and the Southern Hemisphere, assuming that the skies were clear.

The object, named 2004 FH, was detected Monday.

"It's a guaranteed miss," astronomer Paul Chodas, of the Near Earth Object Program office at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said Wednesday.

As it flew past Earth, the path of 2004 FH was bent about 15 degrees by Earth's gravity. It was zooming from one side of the moon's orbit to the other in 31 hours. Astronomers swung telescopes toward the newfound object for what they considered an unprecedented opportunity to study a space rock up close.

An object of this size, were it to take direct aim, would likely break apart or explode in the atmosphere, astronomers say. The result could cause local damage. Something just slightly larger could survive to the surface and destroy a city.

Out there
Most asteroids reside in a belt between Mars and Jupiter, orbiting the sun for eons without leaving that general region. But gravitational interactions kick some inward. It is not uncommon for asteroids to pass near the Earth. It is uncommon to spot them.

Prior to this event, the closest known asteroid flyby was on Sept. 27 last year, when another smallish rock named 2003 SQ222 came within 54,700 miles (88,000 kilometers) of Earth. It was not detected until after it hurtled by. Experts say other similarly sized space rocks pass close about once every two years but go undetected.

Asteroid 2004 FH's orbit takes it closer to the sun than Venus, and just outside Earth's orbit. It circles the sun once every nine months, astronomers say.

Smaller boulders routinely plunge into the atmosphere and vaporize or explode, sometimes dropping fragments to the surface and igniting fires and fears.

Earlier this month, astronomers gathered to pondered the risk of small space rocks that typically are not spotted until they are within hours of possible impacts. Asteroid detections have skyrocketed in recent years, meanwhile, as new electronic cameras increase sensitivity and automated telescopes scan the skies for anything that moves in relation to background stars. Researchers say significant new spending would be required to purposely find and track asteroids smaller than 0.6 miles (1 kilometer).

Meanwhile, asteroid hunters have for the past decade or so focused on finding the larger asteroids, those that could cause global damage. They are not set up to spot all of the smaller objects that inhabit the same general space as Earth. There could be millions. Those that are found involve serendipity.

Lucky find
"The important thing is not that it's happening, but that we detected it," JPL astronomer Steve Chesley said of Thursday's flyby.

The newfound asteroid was detected late Monday by the NASA-funded LINEAR asteroid survey in New Mexico. Follow-up observations were made on Tuesday to confirm the course.

The asteroid circles the sun every nine months, according to calculations by Gareth Williams of the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Mass. It swings inside the orbit of Venus and ranges just beyond Earth, moving in roughly the same plane in space through which the planets travel.

Astronomers can't say whether the asteroid might encounter Earth in the future as it continues to orbit the sun.

Spotting 2004 FH would be difficult for most observers. During its closest approach, the asteroid's location in the sky varied greatly depending on a person's exact location on the ground, explains Joe Rao,'s night sky columnist. Seasoned skywatchers can find detailed position information, or ephemeris, at the Minor Planet Center's Web site.

Asteroids aren't the only wanderers to frequent the inner solar system. This spring, two recently found comets are expected to become visible to the naked eye for observers around the world. Meanwhile, casual skywatchers can see all five naked-eye planets right now in the evening sky.

This report includes information from The Associated Press.

© 2004 All rights reserved. More from

New “Record” Near Miss Asteroid ‘2004 FY15’ Grazes By…03/27/04

by Mitch Battros (EC T V)

 Earth Changes T V Exclusive!!!!!

 I know this is hard to believe, but it is true. Just hours ago, a new razor close asteroid zoomed by Earth. It is known as ‘2004 FY15’. I am researching like mad trying to find ‘who’ found this rock, and ‘when’. I will be reporting on this breaking news event as information becomes available.

 Just In!!! I found him. Asteroid 2004 FY15 occurred early this morning (March 27th). It was discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey (CSS) in Arizona and confirmed early by Robert Hutsebaut of Brussels , Belgium .  He did this working from his home in Belgium and using a Rent-a-scope telescope at New Mexico Skies.

  T he object is 25 meters (75 feet) across. Distance was a mere 23,786 kilometers (14,780 miles). T his is the 12,000 miles “closer” than last weeks Asteroid 2004 FH “record close flyby”. Folks, I realize most of you may not be able to grasp just how close and dangerous this asteroid is. It is his tor y making, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see emergency maneuvers are be planned for the many military and communication satellites in our skies. You can count on all major news networks picking this s tor y up.

 FLASH: I just got off the phone with Robert Hutsebaut in Belgium . I have him scheduled for a special EC T V ‘Radio Hour’ presentation “live” this Monday March 29th from 9 PM to 10 PM (Pacific). You won’t want to miss this. In addition, I am arranging an interview tomorrow, March 28th with Arnie Rosner – Owner/Crea tor of Rent-a-scope using professional telescopes in New Mexico . I will send out a notice in the morning with a scheduled time for Sunday’s show.

 See: Flyby Graphic

 Folks, sometimes the stars fall right in line, and I just happened to be there to catch them. J

 More coming………….

 Subscribe T o EC T V For Full Access:

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About Mitch:

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 Mitch Battros
Producer - Earth Changes T V

UFO blasts sky like 50,000 spotlights
'I've seen a few satellites ... but I'd never seen anything as big as that one'

April 1, 2004

© 2004

Was it a brilliant meteor that flashed across Australia?
 (Illustration by Leonard Wikberg III, courtesy

"Suddenly there was this flash, it's the only way I can describe it – it was so bright it was a white flash and it lit everything up. It was like somebody had turned on 50,000 spotlights."

That's how Elsa Nelms described the bright light in the Australian outback around 7 p.m. local time last night, as a huge fireball reportedly crashed to Earth somewhere in the state of Queensland.

"We all looked up in the sky and there was a white smoke trail coming from the Northeast – like a firecracker smoke trail but it was too high to even be an aircraft," the Winton resident told the Australian Associated Press.

Some citizens thought they might be under attack.

"[My friend] thought we were getting bombed and it just come over this big fire with a big tail about the size of a semi-trailer and we heard this big explosion," a witness said, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. "The ground was just vibrating and there was this big vapor trail and it stayed in the air for about 10 minutes ... we didn't know what was happening."

Grazier Peter Crombie told ABC the light show was fantastic.

1966 meteor seen above Wrightwood, Calif. 
(NASA photo: James W. Young)

"It just lit up the whole garden here like an arc light ... with that really brilliant light," he said. "I was talking to one lady or two ladies driving along, they said it lit up the whole inside of the car. You could just see everything you know, you could honestly read a newspaper."

"It actually shook buildings," George Schafer of Winton told the Townsville Bulletin. "There was a bang like you wouldn't believe."

Mike Barton of Australian Search and Rescue says the pilot of a Virgin Blue passenger jet reported the unidentified object flying over him at about 25,000 feet, and told ABC it "looks like some sort of meteor space re-entry."

Murray Smith from the town of Roma described his experience to the network.

"I actually had my back to it, but somebody yelled out what's that?" he said. "I looked around and I said what the hell is it? It was a big fireball. I don't know how big you'd say it was, as big as the sun anyway with the front end of it and a pretty long comet like tail on it. But all I can say was it was big. Nothing like I'd ever seen, and I've seen a few satellites and this and that, but I'd never seen anything as big as that one."

Back in Winton, Nelms told AAP her house shook and the entire town either witnessed or felt the event, as phones instantly started ringing and people jumped out of their homes.

"The neighbors came over and they were white-faced," she said.

Nelms said she spoke with others some 80 miles away from Winton who saw the flash but didn't feel any vibration.

"There's probably is a big hole somewhere – but had this fallen on Winton we probably wouldn't be sitting here talking about it," she said.

While no one has confirmed what the object was, officials suspect it was a meteorite, though the location of impact has yet to be determined.

© 2004, Inc.


Posted By: Miker12 <Send E-Mail>
Date: Friday, 25 June 2004, 1:23 a.m.

Asteroid (2004 MC)

simulation of near miss (less than us to moon)& closer than the upcoming Toutatis in September.

see caption


 6-25-04 - Over the last couple of months I've read with interest the furore generated by "Aussie Bloke" and his claims of an imminent earth impactor of some kind. I've also noted Michael Goodspeed's anecdotal stories about missile readiness at Fort Greely, the arrival of Toutatis, the deployment of many of the worlds naval units and the intercepted conversation from Snowballnet.
I intend to talk about Toutatis a little nearer September 29, but for the moment I would like to concentrate on what could be a current threat to our planet.
I was initially skeptical about "Aussie Bloke's" claims, which have now been proved a hoax, but I've spent a good deal of time over the last six weeks researching and investigating the possibilities of an impact event or any other celestial happenings of interest in the last week of June.
As has been mentioned on, we are currently being treated to a good nightime display from the Taurid meteors and on Sunday, June 27 at 01h GMT (which corresponds to Saturday, June 26 at 9:00 p.m. EDT) the Earth should be passing through the June Bootids meteor shower, ejected by Comet Pons-Winnecke.
Coincidentally, I have found that on June 27 and June 29 the Earth is also subject to an extremely close approach by two little known asteroids. The first, on June 27, is designated 25143 Itokawa. Information is sparse on Itokawa, but what is known is that the asteroid is approximately 0.36 kilometers wide and on June 27 it will come within 0.0128968 Astronomical Units of Earth. An Astronomical Unit (AU) is equal to 149,597,871 kilometers, so Itokawa will pass us bye at less than a million miles
The June 29 asteroid is designated 2004 MC. It was only discovered ten days ago, on June 15 and will come even closer to Earth than Itokawa. 2004 MC will come within 0.0097 Astronomical Units of the planet, less than 850 thousand miles, a very near miss, and because of the late discovery of the asteroid NASA is unsure of the size of 2004 MC and its orbital path is not absolutely certain.
On June 21 NASA's Near Earth Orbit Dynamic Site said of 2004 MC "This object has the possibilty of impacting the Earth". This statement was, however, removed on June 22, just one day after it appeared.
Co-incidentally, on June 21 Asteroid 2004 MR1, an asteroid measuring some 35 metres wide, missed Earth by only 0.0038 Astronomical Units, about 350 thousand miles.
Whether or not Itokawa and 2004 MC do pose a threat to Earth I cannot say. However, one thing is sure, both these objects are coming very, very close to us in the next few days. For more information on the orbit simulations of the asteroids and observation information, please check the links below.
Oh, and have a nice day.
Orbit Simulation:-;main
2004 MC:-
Orbit Simulation:-;main
Copyright: Ian Gurney June 2004.
Ian Gurney is the author of "The Cassandra Prophecy-Armageddon
Approaches." ( and can be contacted at
Ian Gurney is a journalist, broadcaster and author of the bestseller "The
Cassandra Prophecy" published by International Global Press. ISBN

Jul 09 - Comet Chiron Closest Approach To Earth (11.889 AU)
Jul 10 - Aura Delta 2 Launch
Jul 10 - Asteroid 2003 YN107 Near-Earth Flyby (0.060 AU)
Jul 10 - Asteroid 9941 Iguanodon Closest Approach To Earth (1.556 AU)
Jul 10 - Asteroid 3267 Glo Closest Approach To Earth (1.711 AU)

Jul 11 - Asteroid 1999 MN Near-Earth Flyby (0.019 AU)
Jul 11 - Asteroid 7359 Messier Closest Approach To Earth (2.221 AU)
Jul 11 - Asteroid 7066 Nessus Closest Approach To Earth (17.877 AU)

Jul 12 -[Jul 03] Anik F-2 Ariane 5 Launch
Jul 12 - Asteroid 8734 Warner Closest Approach To Earth (1.874 AU)

Jul 14 - Asteroid 2001 OY13 Near-Earth Flyby (0.063 AU)
Jul 14 - Asteroid 3656 Hemingway Closest Approach To Earth (0.937 AU)

Jul 15 - Asteroid 9880 Stegosaurus Closest Approach To Earth (1.470 AU)

Jul 16 - Asteroid 8120 Kobe Closest Approach To Earth (1.124 AU)

     (2004 PZ19) 2004-Aug-11 20:07 ± < 00:01 1.6/0.0041 1.6/0.0041 11.38 11.32 1.13e+03 24.5 4 APO*
      (2004 PU42) 2004-Aug-15 07:31 ± < 00:01 2.1/0.0053 2.1/0.0053 10.33 10.28 810 26.8 4 APO*
      (2004 PR92) 2004-Aug-20 15:35 ± < 00:01 11.8/0.0304 11.7/0.0301 11.52 11.51 174 25.0 5 APO*
      (2004 PB97) 2004-Aug-09 09:36 ±   00:01 13.1/0.0337 12.9/0.0333 6.23 6.22 134 24.9 2 AMO*
      (2004 QB) 2004-Aug-06 10:52 ±   00:01 4.3/0.0110 4.3/0.0110 18.09 18.08 3.14e+03 19.8 10 APO*
      (2004 QA2) 2004-Aug-10 17:46 ± < 00:01 29.7/0.0764 29.7/0.0763 10.10 10.10 2.33e+03 22.3 7 AMO*
      (2004 QB3) 2004-Aug-15 06:46 ± < 00:01 17.5/0.0448 17.2/0.0442 13.25 13.25 142 24.4 3 ATE*
      (2004 QR4) 2004-Aug-23 17:47 ± < 00:01 6.2/0.0158 6.1/0.0157 8.20 8.18 196 26.6 1 APO*
      (2004 QO5) 2004-Aug-27 16:52 ± < 00:01 13.6/0.0349 13.3/0.0343 9.54 9.53 102 25.7 2 APO*
      (2004 QJ13) 2004-Aug-22 09:37 ±   00:07 15.8/0.0407 15.6/0.0402 6.15 6.14 125 25.3 1 AMO*
      (2004 QF14) 2004-Aug-16 04:06 ± < 00:01 14.3/0.0367 14.3/0.0366 9.49 9.48 1.07e+03 22.7 10 APO*
      (2004 QA22) 2004-Aug-24 12:04 ± < 00:01 2.5/0.0063 2.5/0.0063 3.47 3.35 1.09e+03 27.9 7 ATE*
      (2004 QN22) 2004-Aug-27 04:00 ± < 00:01 13.6/0.0350 13.5/0.0346 9.22 9.21 209 24.0 4 APO*
      (2004 RV2) 2004-Aug-26 10:07 ± < 00:01 38.3/0.0985 37.9/0.0974 10.59 10.59 253 20.7 8 AMO*


1 AU = ~150 million kilometers
1 LD = Lunar Distance = ~384,000 kilometers

(2004 SE26)  2004-Sep-19 0.0125 4.9 19 m - 42 m 11.16
(2004 SV55)  2004-Sep-19 0.1791 69.7 670 m - 1.5 km 32.80
(2004 SU26)  2004-Sep-20 0.0347 13.5 31 m - 69 m 17.65
(2004 HO)  2004-Sep-20 0.0870 33.9 500 m - 1.1 km 13.03
(2004 SR26)  2004-Sep-20 0.0109 4.2 14 m - 31 m 5.94
(2004 ST26)  2004-Sep-21 0.0025 1.0 14 m - 32 m 21.38
(2004 SS26)  2004-Sep-23 0.0407 15.8 64 m - 140 m 20.22
(2004 SW26)  2004-Sep-24 0.0425 16.5 20 m - 44 m 11.07
66063 (1998 RO1)  2004-Sep-26 0.0921 35.9 690 m - 1.5 km 24.01
(2004 RY10)  2004-Sep-26 0.1236 48.1 160 m - 360 m 16.51


* Diameter estimates based on the object's absolute magnitude.


1 AU = ~150 million kilometers
1 LD = Lunar Distance = ~384,000 kilometers

(2004 RO111)  2004-Sep-29 0.0726 28.3 63 m - 140 m 7.76
4179 Toutatis  2004-Sep-29 0.0104 4.0 2.3 km - 5.2 km 11.00
(2004 SY4)  2004-Sep-29 0.0215 8.4 37 m - 83 m 9.70
(2004 SU55)  2004-Oct-01 0.0558 21.7 38 m - 85 m 2.85
(2003 UO25)  2004-Oct-01 0.1651 64.3 93 m - 210 m 9.75
(2004 RN9)  2004-Oct-03 0.0939 36.5 190 m - 420 m 9.77
(2004 RX165)  2004-Oct-04 0.1854 72.2 160 m - 370 m 7.74
(2004 SC56)  2004-Oct-04 0.0349 13.6 84 m - 190 m 9.07
(2004 RE84)  2004-Oct-06 0.0619 24.1 110 m - 240 m 15.29
85770 (1998 UP1)  2004-Oct-06 0.1334 51.9 220 m - 500 m 17.69
(2004 RQ252)  2004-Oct-09 0.0547 21.3 93 m - 210 m 10.70
(1998 ST27)  2004-Oct-09 0.1209 47.1 340 m - 750 m 20.40
(2004 SB1)  2004-Oct-13 0.0897 34.9 260 m - 570 m 13.90
(1999 LF6)  2004-Oct-18 0.0709 27.6 630 m - 1.4 km 11.82
(2003 UT55)  2004-Oct-21 0.1877 73.0 9.1 m - 20 m 12.96
(2004 RU331)  2004-Oct-24 0.1457 56.7 210 m - 470 m 9.53
(2002 VS14)  2004-Oct-24 0.1271 49.5 110 m - 250 m 14.81
87024 (2000 JS66)  2004-Nov-02 0.1970 76.7 500 m - 1.1 km 7.94
(2003 LH)  2004-Nov-03 0.1089 42.4 28 m - 63 m 7.60
(2004 SW55)  2004-Nov-06 0.0900 35.0 180 m - 400 m 7.75
(2004 QD17)  2004-Nov-07 0.1821 70.9 360 m - 790 m 6.82
(2000 JE5)  2004-Nov-10 0.1409 54.8 510 m - 1.1 km 31.09
33342 (1998 WT24)  2004-Nov-12 0.0973 37.9 700 m - 1.6 km 10.96
(2004 RD252)  2004-Nov-12 0.1611 62.7 420 m - 950 m 14.76
3908 Nyx  2004-Nov-14 0.1394 54.3 880 m - 2.0 km 8.88
(2000 WN10)  2004-Nov-15 0.1728 67.3 280 m - 620 m 12.36
7753 (1988 XB)  2004-Nov-21 0.0729 28.4 510 m - 1.1 km 11.33
(2004 OB)  2004-Nov-22 0.0543 21.1 510 m - 1.1 km 7.16
(2003 WP25)  2004-Nov-25 0.1175 45.7 37 m - 83 m 3.65
(2002 LW)  2004-Nov-30 0.0555 21.6 86 m - 190 m 6.31


* Diameter estimates based on the object's absolute magnitude.




      Mysterious fireballs ram the Earth
      09/27/2004 17:13
      A mysterious fire tornado that ripped through the jungles had torn out trees in some areas, while leaving the vegetation untouched.

      At night of 14 September 2004 many people got a chance to witness the fall of a fire object near the southern Argentinean town of Ushuaia. Further searches in the region yielded fascinating results: the area of approximately 150 sq meters had absolutely no trees. At first sight, it appeared as though the trees were chopped down; however, all the vegetation remained untouched. More so, according to the Argentinean media, scientists were unable to find any traces of the mysterious fire object that had "melted down" the woods. The next day, on September 15th, another fire object was spotted in that same region.

      Currently, researchers are trying to determine the nature of such mysterious phenomenon. It is likely that it has got something to do with the kind of research work many scientists from all over the world have been preoccupied with for ages. In particular, Sandia National Laboratories hosted a workshop in August of this year which was dedicated specifically to such kind of unexplained phenomena involving descending burning objects.

      One Russian scientist, candidate of physic-mathematical sciences Andrei Ol"khovatov was one of the participants of the workshop.

      In his exclusive interview to "PRAVDA.RU", Mr. Ol"khovatov noted that due to the lack of evidences regarding recent events in Argentina, it is rather difficult to draw any conclusions at this point. However, if our analysis of the eyewitnesses" words will be confirmed concerning the fact that the fire object had in fact landed in the area with major tree-anomaly and the date of the anomaly will correspond to that of the fall, then this occurrence could be classified as something of a mystic origin. In that case, it will be referred to as a "geophysical meteors."

      Scientists have yet been unable to determine physical mechanism of geophysical meteors. All that is known today is the fact that geophysical meteors somewhat resemble high-voltage ball lightning and has a tendency to remain in certain geophysical environment.

      According to Ol"khovatov, geophysical meteors are far from harmless. In January of this year, a fire ball has nearly completely destroyed a house in the Iranian town of Babol. However, there were plenty of far worse cases. In 1935 for instance, hundreds of kilometers of jungles have been completely burnt down in South America, in British Guiana. 
ASTEROID FLYBY: 4179 Toutatis, a weirdly tumbling 2-by-5 km asteroid, is flying past Earth this week. At a distance of only one million miles (about 4 times farther from Earth than the Moon), this big space rock is glowing as brightly as a 9th magnitude star--an easy target for backyard telescopes.

Above: Toutatis moves among the stars of Capricornus on Sept. 23rd. Click to view the complete movie made by Alberto Quijano Vodniza et al. at the University of Narińo Observatory in Columbia.

Observers in the southern hemisphere are favored. Toutatis is south of the celestial equator, today scooting through the constellation Microscopium. On Sept. 29th, the date of closest approach, it will pass about 1o from the star Alpha Centauri as seen from Australia and New Zealand. [ephemeris] [finder charts]

During previous near-Earth flybys, astronomers pinged the space rock using NASA's Goldstone and Arecibo radars. They pinpointed Toutatis' orbit, showing that it poses no danger to Earth for centuries at least, and mapped Toutatis' bizarre surface. Radar observations again this year aim to measure Toutatis' Yarkovsky acceleration.

AURORA SEASON: Northern autumn has begun, and that means it's aurora season. Strange but true: there are more geomagnetic storms around the autumnal equinox than any other time of the year. Would you like a phone call when the next storm begins? Sign up for Spaceweather PHONE.

The first auroras of autumn 2004, pictured right, appeared on Sept. 22nd over Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories of Canada. "This storm happened as we were here at the mine shaft taking photos. It was great and lit up the sky all around us!" says photographer Andrew Eaton. [gallery]

On 27 Sep 2004 there were 633 known Potentially
Hazardous Asteroids
Sept. 2004 Earth-asteroid encounters




2003 UX34

Sept. 9

22 LD


2004 JA27

Sept. 10

23 LD


1998 OX4

Sept. 14

25 LD



Sept. 29

4 LD


Notes: LD is a "Lunar Distance." 1 LD = 384,401 km, the distance between Earth and the Moon. 1 LD also equals 0.00256 AU. MAG is the visual magnitude of the asteroid on the date of closest approach.

List of known asteroids in 2004:


The Orionid meteor shower peaks this week on Thursday morning, Oct. 21st.

October 19, 2004: Would you like to see a piece of Halley's Comet streak past a planet that looks like an exploding star? No problem. Just set your alarm.

It's going to happen, in plain view--no telescope required, on Thursday morning, Oct. 21st.

Right: This is what an early-morning meteor looks like. Photo credit: Simon Filiatrault of Quebec, Canada. [More]

Go outside before sunrise, around 5:30 a.m. is best, and look east. The brightest object in that direction is the planet Venus. It looks like a star going supernova. Above Venus lies Saturn,  and below, near the horizon, is Jupiter. Every 10 minutes or so you'll see a meteor streak among these planets. The meteors are pieces of Halley's Comet.

"Every year around this time Earth glides through a cloud of dusty debris from Halley's Comet," explains Bill Cooke of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. "Bits of dust, most no larger than grains of sand, disintegrate in Earth's atmosphere and become shooting stars."

"It's not an intense shower," he says, "but it is a pretty one."

Astronomers call it the "Orionid meteor shower," because the meteors appear to stream out of a point (called "the radiant") in the constellation Orion. The radiant is near Orion's left shoulder. But don't stare at that spot, advises Cooke. Meteors near the radiant seem short and stubby, a result of foreshortening. Instead, look toward any dark region of the sky about 90 degrees away. The vicinity of Venus or Jupiter is good. You'll see just as many Orionids there, but they will seem longer and more dramatic.

see caption













Above: A map of the morning sky on Thursday, Oct. 21st at 5:30 a.m., viewed facing southeast. Click here to view a larger, more complete map.

Framing the scene are several bright stars: Sirius, Regulus, Procyon and others. Pay special attention to Castor and Pollux in Gemini. They're arranged in an eye-catching line with Saturn.

To sum it up in one word: "sparkling." Two more words: "early" and "cold." Or how about "worth waking up for?" You decide.

More about the Orionids

The Orionids are related to the eta Aquarids, a southern hemisphere meteor shower in May. Both spring from Halley's Comet.

the orbit of Halley's Comet"Earth comes close to the orbit of Halley's Comet twice a year, once in May and again in October," explains 
Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Although the comet itself is rarely nearby--it's near the orbit of Neptune now--Halley's dusty debris constantly moves through  the inner solar system and causes the two regular meteor showers.

In 1986, the last time Comet Halley swung past the Sun, solar heating evaporated about 6 meters of dust-laden ice from the comet's nucleus. That's typical, say researchers. The comet has been visiting the inner solar system every 76 years for millennia, shedding layers of dust each time.

At first, the bits of dust simply follow the comet, which means they can't strike our planet. Earth's orbit and Halley's orbit, at their closest points, are separated by 22 million km (0.15 AU). Eventually, though, the dust spreads out and some of it migrates until it is on a collision course with Earth.

Right: The European Space Agency's Giotto probe captured this close-up image of the nucleus of Halley's comet. The bright jets are spewing dusty debris. [more]

"Particles that leave the nucleus evolve away from the orbit of the comet for two main reasons," explains Yeomans. "First, gravitational 
perturbations caused by encounters with planets are different [for the dust and for the comet]. Second, dust particles are affected by solar  radiation pressure to a far greater extent than the comet itself."

"The orbital evolution of Halley's dust is a very complicated problem," notes Cooke. No one knows exactly how long it takes for a dust-sized piece of Halley to move to an Earth-crossing orbit -- perhaps centuries or even thousands of years. One thing is certain: "Orionid meteoroids  are old."

They're also fast. "Orionid meteoroids strike Earth's atmosphere traveling 66 km/s or 148,000 mph," he continued. Only the November  Leonids (72 km/s) are faster. Sometimes fast meteors explode, and they leave glowing "trains" (incandescent bits of debris in their wake)  that last for several seconds to minutes. These trains, blown by upper atmospheric winds into twisted and convoluted shapes, can be even prettier than the meteors themselves.

see caption

Haleys Comet Core 



Asteroid Passes Between Satellites and Earth

By Robert Roy Britt
Senior Science Writer
posted: 22 December 2004
10:24 am ET

Astronomers spotted an asteroid this week after it had flown past Earth on a course that took it so close to the planet it was below the orbits of some satellites.

The space rock was relatively small, however, and would not have posed any danger had it plunged into the atmosphere.

The object, named 2004 YD5, was about 16 feet (5 meters) wide, though that's a rough estimate based on its distance and assumed reflectivity. Had it entered the atmosphere, it would have exploded high up, experts figure.

Satellite territory

The asteroid passed just under the orbits of geostationary satellites, which at 22,300 miles (36,000 kilometers) altitude are the highest manmade objects circling Earth. Most other satellites, along with the International Space Station, circle the planet at just a few hundred miles up.

2004 YD5 is the second closest pass of an asteroid ever observed by telescope, according to the Asteroid/Comet Connection, a web site that monitors space rock discoveries. The closest involved a rock that flew by last March and was not announced until August.

2004 YD5 was discovered Tuesday, Dec. 21 by Stan Pope, who volunteers his time to examine images provided by the FMO (Fast Moving Object) project, an online program run by the University of Arizona's Spacewatch Project. After the initial detection, other observers noted the object's position during the day and its path was then calculated back. Closest approach occurred on Dec. 19.

The rock approached Earth from near the Sun and so would have been nearly impossible to detect prior to close passage. It soared over Antarctica -- underneath the planet, Washington State University researcher Pasquale Tricarico told the Asteroid/Comet Connection.

Astronomers are aware of this significant blind spot for asteroids that approach Earth while in the glare of the Sun. Only a space telescope could detect such objects before they arrive.

Similar events

WATCH VIDEO: Prepare for impact! Join the watch for killer comets and ominous asteroids. Spend the night on Kitt Peak with the SPACEWATCH Project stalking the flying mega-mountains that could destroy us ... or save us.


Asteroids orbit the Sun, mostly in a belt between Mars and Jupiter. Some are redirected closer to the Sun, often by gravitational nudges provided by the planets. Earth has been hit by devastatingly large asteroids many times in the distant past. Astronomers say sooner or later the planet will be struck again, but the odds of a large impact occurring in any given century are extremely small.

This has been an interesting year for asteroid encounters.

On March 18, a giant boulder about 100 feet (30 meters) wide passed just above the orbits of geostationary satellites. Its path was bent about 15 degrees by Earth's gravity. The asteroid, 2004 FH, was discovered a mere three days prior.

On Sept. 29, the largest asteroid ever known to pass near Earth, named Toutatis, roamed by at about four times the distance to the Moon. Astronomers had known for years the flyby would occur, since Toutatis is 2.9 miles (4.6 kilometers) long and had been in Earth's vicinity before.

But many near misses by small asteroids likely go unnoticed, astronomers say, because the entire sky is not continuously monitored. Such small asteroids have been detected only in recent years as more sophisticated telescopes have been hooked up with digital cameras.

And some asteroids come even closer, entering the atmosphere. Most never reach the ground because they break apart under the stress of entry. One study of data collected by U.S. military satellites logged 300 in-air asteroid explosions.

2004 YD5 was announced Tuesday evening by the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Mass, where comet and asteroid observations from around the globe are digested.




Posted By: Michael
Date: Sunday, 2 January 2005, 11:21 p.m.

'This Hopi Blue-green star appearing with the naked eye is echoed in the Dames borrowed R.V. team results as a time marker during a warring conflict when all would stop and historically ´look up in wonder´...
...could this be Comet C/2004 Q2 (Machholz)
the first comet to come this close to us and be clearly this color as observable in the Northern hemisphere coming into view from the 7th-15th trailing just behind the Earth from a southern angle up and reaching a solar system equatorial perihelion on 1/7/05?'

'An ancient Hopi Indian prophecy states, "When the Blue Star Kachina makes its appearance in the heavens, the Fifth World will emerge". This will be the Day of Purification. The Hopi name for the star Sirius is Blue Star Kachina. It will come when the Saquasohuh (Blue Star) Kachina dances in the plaza(a place in the thoroughfare of our solar system?-around 7th January) and removes his mask.'
This following Nasa link shows the path of the comet arriving parallel to the Earth and Solar System around 7th January 2004

'And this is the Ninth and Last Sign: You will hear of a dwelling-place in the heavens, above the earth, that shall fall with a great crash. It will appear as a blue star. Very soon after this, the ceremonies of the Hopi people will cease.'
'These are the Signs that great destruction is here: The world shall rock to and fro. The white man will battle people in other lands - those who possessed the first light of wisdom(The Middle East?). There will be many columns of smoke and fire such as the white man has made in the deserts not far from here.' (Hopi Blue Star Prophecies)

  Not just the weather is of concern to the world’s scientists and government authorities but also the increasing numbers of meteors exploding in the earth’s atmosphere in numbers unprecedented in recorded history.

Spanish news sources have reported in the past few days, "Residents of the area near Madrid airport reported seeing a ball of fire explode and disintregrate in skies over the Spanish capital overnight, security services said."

This joins the hundreds of other reported events of these meteors from all around the world including:

On December 4th in the New England Region of the United States where it is says, “the bright flash light up the clouds, three seconds later came the boom”

On December 6th over Australia where it was reported, “An eerie, constant, low rumbling sound accompanied the explosions.” From ‘fireballs’.

On December 12th the reports from the Washington D.C. Region of the United States that says, “It looked like a ball of fire falling out of the sky.".

On December 13th the report of the fireball that lit up the skies of China ‘turning night into day’.

On December 16th from the Utah Region of the United States where it was reported, “Meteor May Have Fallen in Salt Lake”

On December 19th where in Indonesia a news report was headlined, “Meteor suspected amid unexplained sightings and blast in Indonesia”

On December 21st where an unknown asteroid, and since named 2004 YD5, was discovered flying past the earth and under our satellites.

On January 5th where in the Wisconsin Region of the United States a news report says, “Authorities in north central Wisconsin received dozens of reports Tuesday evening of bright flashes of light in the sky, as from an explosion, and they said it likely came from meteor activity."

On January 7th where in the Alaskan Region of the United States a news report says, “Juneau residents saw a fiery ball traversing the sky.”

On January 12th where in India it is reported, “I saw a huge ball of fire in the air. It raced down to the earth so fast that before I could do anything."

On January 26th where in Cambodia it is reported, "It made a noise like a bomb exploding, it´s a good thing it didn´t land in the village or people could have been killed."

Concern is also increasing due to a large number of the world’s 1,500 active volcanoes becoming simultaneously active in recent weeks and the effects of these volcanic eruptions towards more global weather chaos. Even of more concern are the worlds super volcanoes, and to which the British press has recently said, "Slumbering supervolcanoes powerful enough to wipe out much of the planet may awaken much sooner than it had previously been thought. Experts believed it would take hundreds of thousands of years for reservoirs of molton rock, or magma, beneath a supervolcano to build for an eruption. But a new study indicates the time between super-eruptions can actually be tens of thousands of years - and many are already long overdue."

"Residents of Guam in the Mariana Islands are suffering from sickness from volcanic haze due to the eruption of Anatahan Volcano. Dozens of people have arrived at Guam´s only hospital complaining of respiratory problems and headaches." , it is being reported, and also that the Manam Volcano in Papua New Guinea eruption reached the stratosphere, "where in one hour the ash cloud reached a diameter of 180km and an altitude of 21-24km.”

To all of these events it has been our confusion as to why more Western people are not heeding in great numbers these many hundreds of warnings. Even to their past prophets of their own religions, who have foretold them about these events, they are not heeding. But as we become more acquainted with them we can see that they have no plans for survival, other than in small groups that are shunned by others.

Today as we, and many other peoples of world, prepare for survival, the Western people really do not know what to do. Confronted with the enormity of world events pressing upon their lives they are not facing reality, but are instead hiding themselves being false masks of bravery and their believed intellectual superiority over others.

From:  Godlike Productions




Orbital Information:

Keplerian elements at epoch 53450 (MJD)

  element value 1-sigma variation
a (AU) 0.934075 1.456e-05
eccentricity 0.331004 4.443e-05
inclination (deg) 3.762 0.001135
Asc. node (deg) 177.602 0.0001155
Arg. perih. (deg) 120.558 0.001633
M (deg) 279.41 0.007158

Other useful data:
Absolute Magnitude (H) 26.935
Slope parameter (G) 0.15
Perihelion (AU) 0.6249
Aphelion (AU) 1.2433
Asc. node-Earth sep. (AU) 0.00471
Desc. node-Earth sep. (AU) -0.29123
Earth MOID (AU) 0.00084
Orbital period (days) 329.74
Date of orbit computation Mar 20 08:35

More details:;main 2005EY95


Orbital Information:

Keplerian elements at epoch 53450 (MJD)
  element value 1-sigma variation
a (AU) 1.08718 0.001788
eccentricity 0.544802 0.003178
inclination (deg) 3.217 0.02404
Asc. node (deg) 72.679 0.2173
Arg. perih. (deg) 342.158 0.14
M (deg) 68.756 0.3083

Other useful data:
Absolute Magnitude (H) 20.302
Slope parameter (G) 0.15
Perihelion (AU) 0.4949
Aphelion (AU) 1.6795
Asc. node-Earth sep. (AU) -0.48175
Desc. node-Earth sep. (AU) 0.57454
Earth MOID (AU) 0.04042
Orbital period (days) 414.049
Date of orbit computation Mar 23 09:20

More details:;main


On May 24th 2005 NEA “2005 ED318” will come within 147, 204 miles to Earth. (or 245,340 kilometers). This is 0.0164 AU’s. AU stands for Astronomical Unit. 1 AU = 149,597,871 kilometers. (or 89,758,722 miles). In astronomical terms this is a close fly by.


With the following link you can manipulate the osculating orbit to get a visual on just how close this will be.