Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Aten-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a school bus or smaller
  • Will pass within 4,642,487 km of Earth in 2020
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2017 RZ15 is a very small asteroid whose orbit could bring it in close proximity to Earth. NASA JPL has classified 2017 RZ15 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.

2017 RZ15 orbits the sun every 342 days (0.94 years), coming as close as 0.71 AU and reaching as far as 1.20 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2017 RZ15 is probably between 0.066 to 0.300 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a school bus or smaller.

Close Approaches

2017 RZ15's orbit is 0.00 AU from Earth's orbit at its closest point. This means that its orbit is relatively close to Earth's orbit.

2017 RZ15 has 12 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
Jan. 15, 2020 4,642,487 7.389
Sept. 16, 2032 18,727,387 5.264
Jan. 11, 2035 18,326,913 11.530
Sept. 5, 2046 7,958,334 9.482
Sept. 3, 2061 6,421,628 9.179
Sept. 6, 2076 17,824,586 11.448
Sept. 6, 2091 12,305,735 10.264
Jan. 10, 2094 14,336,448 5.306
Sept. 5, 2106 8,650,190 6.203
Jan. 14, 2109 9,504,767 9.547
Sept. 7, 2120 19,612,481 11.778
Sept. 5, 2135 6,368,149 9.157

NASA Sentry has assessed impact risk for 29 very close approach scenarios. Here are the top scenarios ordered by probability of impact:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Distance Error (km) Probability of Impact (%) Impact Energy (Mt)
Sept. 4, 2106 4,789.32 ±1,685.25 0.00253 0.06007
Sept. 5, 2106 3,447.54 ±535.29 0.00101 0.05923
Sept. 3, 2090 5,238.72 ±722.57 0.00040 0.06331
Sept. 4, 2078 2,266.26 ±303.49 0.00036 0.05889
Sept. 4, 2078 1,553.64 ±440.75 0.00022 0.05884
Sept. 4, 2074 2,368.98 ±363.27 0.00014 0.05887
Sept. 1, 2092 1,521.54 ±579.79 0.00011 0.06069
Sept. 3, 2090 1,457.34 ±1,870.15 0.00007 0.06249
Sept. 4, 2094 3,511.74 ±339.30 0.00004 0.05885
Sept. 2, 2093 2,773.44 ±1,151.30 0.00003 0.06096
Sept. 3, 2086 5,283.66 ±406.47 0.00003 0.0588
Sept. 4, 2107 3,999.66 ±1,752.79 0.00002 0.06228
Sept. 3, 2109 3,627.30 ±380.82 0.00001 0.06217
Sept. 1, 2093 5,534.04 ±412.88 0.00001 0.06124
Sept. 4, 2094 5,636.76 ±428.00 0.00001 0.05864
Sept. 3, 2071 4,044.60 ±439.73 0.00001 0.05912
Sept. 4, 2082 4,827.84 ±1,793.30 0.00001 0.06103
Sept. 4, 2102 5,887.14 ±4,963.75 0.00001 0.06093
Sept. 4, 2117 5,989.86 ±1,405.59 0.00000 0.06201
Sept. 4, 2091 6,188.88 ±142.67 0.00000 0.05886
Sept. 5, 2106 6,272.34 ±1,573.80 0.00000 0.06185
Sept. 2, 2093 6,439.26 ±863.43 0.00000 0.06202
Sept. 6, 2114 5,989.86 ±1,588.95 0.00000 0.0622
Sept. 3, 2109 8,545.02 ±1,620.41 0.00000 0.06131
Sept. 3, 2087 3,742.86 ±605.29 0.00000 0.05824
Sept. 4, 2101 5,662.44 ±731.37 0.00000 0.06323
Sept. 3, 2100 4,564.62 ±763.08 0.00000 0.06326
Sept. 3, 2091 6,253.08 ±726.36 0.00000 0.0632
Sept. 4, 2106 9,026.52 ±1,216.33 0.00000 0.06066

Images and Observations

2017 RZ15's orbit is determined by observations dating back to Sept. 15, 2017. It was last officially observed on Sept. 18, 2017. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 9 observations used to determine its orbit.

Accessibility and Exploration

2017 RZ15 can be reached with a journey of 402 days. This trajectory would require a delta-v of 7.796 km/s. To put this into perspective, the delta-v to launch a rocket to Low-Earth Orbit is 9.7 km/s. There are 78,181 potential trajectories and launch windows to this asteroid.

See more at the NHATS Mission Trajectories table for 2017 RZ15.

Similar Objects

These objects have orbits that share similar characteristics to the orbit of 2017 RZ15:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2458600.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 0.9572 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.2569
  • Inclination: 2.02°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 162.86°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 61.75°
  • Mean Anomaly: 0.77°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.183 km
  • Magnitude: 27.1

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 342 days (0.94 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 30.45 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 1.20 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.71 AU

Size Comparison

Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 2017 RZ15 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.