Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Apollo-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to the Golden Gate Bridge (1.00 km diameter)
  • Will pass within 8,770,821 km of Earth in 2043
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Classified as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (PHA)
  • See orbit simulation


Icarus is a mid-sized asteroid whose orbit crosses the orbit of Earth. NASA JPL has classified Icarus as a "Potentially Hazardous Asteroid" due to its predicted close pass(es) with Earth.

Icarus orbits the sun every 409 days (1.12 years), coming as close as 0.19 AU and reaching as far as 1.97 AU from the sun. Its orbit is highly elliptical. Icarus is about 1.0 kilometers in diameter, making it larger than ~97% of asteroids but small compared to large asteroids, comparable in size to the Golden Gate Bridge.

The rotation of Icarus has been observed. It completes a rotation on its axis every 2.27 hours.

Close Approaches

Icarus's orbit is 0.03 AU from Earth's orbit at its closest point. This means that there is an wide berth between this asteroid and Earth at all times.

Icarus has 10 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
June 13, 2043 8,770,821 27.709
June 18, 2062 12,477,017 31.275
June 10, 2071 26,844,956 24.451
June 14, 2090 6,513,027 28.170
June 19, 2109 14,792,465 31.789
June 11, 2118 24,249,696 24.850
June 15, 2137 5,918,094 28.266
June 18, 2156 10,524,261 30.944
June 23, 2175 25,758,733 34.130
June 13, 2184 16,003,322 26.255

Images and Observations

Icarus's orbit is determined by observations dating back to July 1, 1949. It was last officially observed on Aug. 11, 2021. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 1,078 observations used to determine its orbit.

Accessibility and Exploration

This asteroid is not considered a viable target for human exploration by the NHATS study.

Similar Objects

These objects have orbits that share similar characteristics to the orbit of Icarus:



   or view a random object

Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459396.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 1.078 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.827
  • Inclination: 22.81°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 87.98°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 31.42°
  • Mean Anomaly: 180.73°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: 1.00000 km
  • Magnitude: 16.35
  • Albedo: 0.51

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 409 days (1.12 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 28.67 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 1.97 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.19 AU
  • Rotation Period: 2.27 hours

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of Icarus is indicated by a ◯ pink circle. Note that the object may not be in your current field of view. Use the controls below to adjust position, location, and time.

Size Rendering

The above comparison is an artistic rendering that uses available data on the diameter of Icarus to create an approximate landscape rendering with Mount Everest in the background. This approximation is built for full-resolution desktop browsers. Shape, color, and texture of asteroid are imagined.