Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Amor-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a school bus or smaller
  • Will pass within 15,524,135 km of Earth in 2019
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

2021 NX is a very small asteroid whose orbit approaches the orbit of Earth but does not cross it. NASA JPL has classified 2021 NX 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.

2021 NX orbits the sun every 732 days (2.00 years), coming as close as 1.08 AU and reaching as far as 2.10 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 2021 NX is probably between 0.021 to 0.047 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a school bus or smaller.

Close Approaches

2021 NX'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.

2021 NX has 5 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
July 30, 2019 15,524,135 5.197
Aug. 1, 2021 13,072,486 4.570
Aug. 4, 2023 12,172,491 4.261
Aug. 19, 2196 13,526,807 3.968
Aug. 16, 2198 12,389,386 3.844

Images and Observations

2021 NX's orbit is determined by observations dating back to July 4, 2021. It was last officially observed on Aug. 5, 2021. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 25 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 2021 NX:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459396.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 1.59 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.3191
  • Inclination: 3.59°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 108.08°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 214.91°
  • Mean Anomaly: 338.83°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.027 km
  • Magnitude: 25.53

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 732 days (2.00 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 23.63 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 2.10 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 1.08 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 2021 NX 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.