Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Apollo-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a basketball court
  • Will pass within 1,140,105 km of Earth in 2022
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Classified as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (PHA)
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2005 LW3 is a very small asteroid whose orbit crosses the orbit of Earth. NASA JPL has classified 2005 LW3 as a "Potentially Hazardous Asteroid" due to its predicted close pass(es) with Earth.

2005 LW3 orbits the sun every 625 days (1.71 years), coming as close as 0.77 AU and reaching as far as 2.09 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2005 LW3 is probably between 0.126 to 0.282 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a basketball court.

Close Approaches

2005 LW3's orbit is 0.00 AU from Earth's orbit at its closest point. This means that its orbit is very close to Earth's orbit.

2005 LW3 has 8 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
Nov. 23, 2022 1,140,105 13.494
Nov. 9, 2041 18,147,893 10.005
June 27, 2048 13,087,885 11.247
Oct. 27, 2072 25,533,186 9.636
June 17, 2079 16,445,108 15.859
Nov. 22, 2084 452,441 13.298
Nov. 29, 2103 10,944,684 15.364
June 18, 2117 16,313,367 15.849

Images and Observations

2005 LW3's orbit is determined by observations dating back to June 5, 2005. It was last officially observed on April 24, 2022. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 69 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 2005 LW3:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459800.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 1.431 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.4622
  • Inclination: 6.05°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 59.61°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 288.24°
  • Mean Anomaly: 327.02°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.163 km
  • Magnitude: 21.62

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 625 days (1.71 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 24.91 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 2.09 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.77 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 2005 LW3 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 below comparison is an artistic rendering that uses available data on the diameter of 2005 LW3 to create an approximate landscape rendering with New York City in the background. This approximation is built for full-resolution desktop browsers. Shape, color, and texture of asteroid are imagined.