Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Apollo-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to the U.S. Capitol building
  • Will pass within 11,752,532 km of Earth in 2020
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2016 YN4 is a very small asteroid whose orbit crosses the orbit of Earth. NASA JPL has classified 2016 YN4 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 YN4 orbits the sun every 1,410 days (3.86 years), coming as close as 0.71 AU and reaching as far as 4.21 AU from the sun. Its orbit is highly elliptical. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2016 YN4 is probably between 0.305 to 0.682 kilometers in diameter, making it small in absolute terms, but larger than 90% of asteroids, very roughly comparable in size to the U.S. Capitol building.

Close Approaches

2016 YN4's orbit is 0.08 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 YN4 has 10 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
Aug. 1, 2020 11,752,532 18.673
Dec. 20, 2098 20,712,116 18.326
Dec. 17, 2102 18,849,480 17.171
Dec. 11, 2106 17,840,784 15.072
Dec. 1, 2110 22,304,705 13.153
Dec. 12, 2114 17,229,587 15.362
Dec. 19, 2118 21,310,910 17.904
Dec. 23, 2122 29,577,071 20.155
Aug. 18, 2183 11,799,180 16.774
Oct. 18, 2187 25,167,196 11.975

Images and Observations

2016 YN4's orbit is determined by observations dating back to Dec. 24, 2016. It was last officially observed on June 29, 2020. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 200 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 YN4:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459000.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 2.459 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.7101
  • Inclination: 8.26°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 341.13°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 39.77°
  • Mean Anomaly: 333.09°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.394 km
  • Magnitude: 19.7

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 1,410 days (3.86 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 18.97 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 4.21 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.71 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 2016 YN4 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 YN4 to create an approximate landscape rendering. The approximation is built for full-resolution desktop browsers. Shape, color, and texture of asteroid are imagined.