Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Aten-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a school bus or smaller
  • Will pass within 3,457,339 km of Earth in 2020
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2020 AH3 is a very small asteroid whose orbit could bring it in close proximity to Earth. NASA JPL has classified 2020 AH3 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.

2020 AH3 orbits the sun every 337 days (0.92 years), coming as close as 0.88 AU and reaching as far as 1.01 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2020 AH3 is probably between 0.037 to 0.082 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a school bus or smaller.

Close Approaches

2020 AH3's orbit is 0.02 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.

2020 AH3 has 5 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
Jan. 11, 2020 3,457,339 14.269
July 1, 2020 24,956,728 15.571
Jan. 10, 2032 12,696,261 14.292
Jan. 9, 2044 26,660,721 14.863
Jan. 9, 2103 25,599,080 14.811

Images and Observations

2020 AH3's orbit is determined by observations dating back to Jan. 14, 2020. It was last officially observed on Jan. 17, 2020. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 44 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 2020 AH3:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459000.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 0.9472 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.0684
  • Inclination: 27.67°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 110.01°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 208.13°
  • Mean Anomaly: 297.87°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.047 km
  • Magnitude: 24.3

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 337 days (0.92 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 30.58 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 1.01 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.88 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 2020 AH3 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 2020 AH3 to create an approximate landscape rendering. The approximation is built for full-resolution desktop browsers. Shape, color, and texture of asteroid are imagined.