Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Apollo-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a school bus or smaller
  • Will pass within 4,821,133 km of Earth in 2020
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2020 HW is a very small asteroid whose orbit crosses the orbit of Earth. NASA JPL has classified 2020 HW 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 HW orbits the sun every 415 days (1.14 years), coming as close as 0.96 AU and reaching as far as 1.22 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2020 HW is probably between 0.016 to 0.036 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a school bus or smaller.

Close Approaches

2020 HW's orbit is 0.03 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 HW has 3 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
April 16, 2020 4,821,133 13.890
Oct. 17, 2020 26,363,758 13.191
April 18, 2087 5,365,057 13.815

Images and Observations

2020 HW's orbit is determined by observations dating back to April 16, 2020. It was last officially observed on April 22, 2020. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 28 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 HW:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2458956.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 1.089 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.1159
  • Inclination: 26.13°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 205.87°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 71.67°
  • Mean Anomaly: 301.51°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.021 km
  • Magnitude: 26.1

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 415 days (1.14 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 28.55 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 1.22 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.96 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

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