Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Aten-class Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to a football field
  • Will pass within 13,504,436 km of Earth in 2020
  • Classified as a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA)
  • Classified as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (PHA)
  • See orbit simulation

Overview

480820 (1998 VF32) is a very small asteroid whose orbit could bring it in close proximity to Earth. NASA JPL has classified 1998 VF32 as a "Potentially Hazardous Asteroid" due to its predicted close pass(es) with Earth.

1998 VF32 orbits the sun every 287 days (0.79 years), coming as close as 0.47 AU and reaching as far as 1.23 AU from the sun. Based on its brightness and the way it reflects light, 1998 VF32 is probably between 0.160 to 0.358 kilometers in diameter, making it a small to average asteroid, very roughly comparable in size to a football field.

Close Approaches

1998 VF32's orbit is 0.04 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.

1998 VF32 has 17 close approaches predicted in the coming decades:

Date Distance from Earth (km) Velocity (km/s)
Nov. 20, 2020 13,504,436 18.325
Nov. 20, 2031 24,096,556 20.266
Nov. 17, 2038 27,407,819 13.798
Nov. 20, 2049 18,171,491 14.407
Nov. 21, 2060 9,892,961 15.333
Nov. 22, 2071 5,670,596 16.257
Nov. 22, 2082 7,913,638 17.229
Nov. 21, 2093 16,399,986 18.838
Nov. 20, 2104 27,345,288 20.864
Nov. 20, 2111 24,740,421 13.932
Nov. 22, 2122 15,626,794 14.647
Nov. 23, 2133 8,146,692 15.614
Nov. 23, 2144 5,768,324 16.493
Nov. 23, 2155 10,247,290 17.675
Nov. 22, 2166 19,711,220 19.423
Nov. 20, 2184 21,917,982 14.104
Nov. 23, 2195 13,088,347 14.922

Images and Observations

1998 VF32's orbit is determined by observations dating back to Nov. 14, 1998. It was last officially observed on Nov. 11, 2020. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 134 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 1998 VF32:

References

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Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459000.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 0.851 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.4437
  • Inclination: 23.74°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 236.28°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 320.92°
  • Mean Anomaly: 54.81°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: ~0.207 km
  • Magnitude: 21.1

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 287 days (0.79 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 32.26 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 1.23 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 0.47 AU

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of 480820 (1998 VF32) 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 1998 VF32 to create an approximate landscape rendering. The approximation is built for full-resolution desktop browsers. Shape, color, and texture of asteroid are imagined.