Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Amor-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a school bus or smaller
  • Will pass within 16,037,085 km of Earth in 2020
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2016 WZ7 is a very small asteroid whose orbit approaches the orbit of Earth but does not cross it. NASA JPL has classified 2016 WZ7 as a "Near Earth Asteroid" due to its orbit's proximity to Earth, but it is not considered potentially hazardous because computer simulations have not indicated any imminent likelihood of future collision.

2016 WZ7 orbits the sun every 725 days (1.98 years), coming as close as 1.03 AU and reaching as far as 2.13 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2016 WZ7 is probably between 0.070 to 0.156 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a school bus or smaller.

Close Approaches

2016 WZ7's orbit is 0.07 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.

2016 WZ7 has 6 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
Sept. 29, 2020 16,037,085 5.839
Sept. 15, 2022 28,568,701 9.246
Nov. 20, 2117 17,000,513 7.549
Nov. 6, 2119 9,529,453 4.934
Oct. 6, 2121 14,602,714 5.378
Sept. 19, 2123 26,378,363 8.686

Images and Observations

2016 WZ7's orbit is determined by observations dating back to Aug. 8, 2016. It was last officially observed on Dec. 10, 2018. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 101 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 2016 WZ7:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459000.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 1.58 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.3491
  • Inclination: 4.47°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 259.92°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 129.27°
  • Mean Anomaly: 290.96°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.090 km
  • Magnitude: 22.9

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 725 days (1.98 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 23.71 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 2.13 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 1.03 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 2016 WZ7 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 2016 WZ7 to create an approximate landscape rendering. The approximation is built for full-resolution desktop browsers. Shape, color, and texture of asteroid are imagined.