Earth has a mini-Moon (NASA calls it a Quasi-Satellite)

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
7,083
Diameter: 40 to 100 meters
Distance from Earth: 15M km (9 M miles)
History: Less than 50 years in Earth orbit
Orbit: surpringly stable (and it may stick around longer than the previous Quasi-satellite)

http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2016-154
Wow... I wonder how long ago it was captured by the Earth, since I doubt that they were both formed at the same time... on the other hand, a leading theory says that the Moon is a fragment of the earth that split after a huge collision with a Mars-sized object... maybe that asteroid is one of the remains that were neither absorbed back into the Earth or the Moon, nor were expelled into space.
 

BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
At last. That is music to me. Even though "quasi-satellite" bends the definition. It is in orbit of the sun. And we have a multi-turn helix. My very first. The diameter of the helix is about 18 million miles. Giving a high and alternating inclination relative to the sun. What a great fine. And it will be around for a while.

This will hopefully give notice to earth's own helical displacement (which is much slower) thru the years of tracking this rock.

With a little luck, science might realize the cause of planet inclination.
 

Thread Starter

GopherT

Joined Nov 23, 2012
8,012
I have no idea how those guys figured 50 years. They just discovered it. I can't imagine it is big enough/close enough to explain some observable pertibation in the earths or it that started in 1966. Who knows.
 

Thread Starter

GopherT

Joined Nov 23, 2012
8,012
So now we have something else to blame as the cause of global warming :).
I try to be selective in my posts to pick topics that will not degenerate to discussions of guns, global warming, or government encroachment of somebody's right. You have changed my threshold on what is post-worthy (I did notice the smiley face - but your post did mention global warming).
 

Wendy

Joined Mar 24, 2008
22,164
Given we are one a potential cusp of mining asteroids, this rock may be doomed.

That or with some orbital tweaking the anchor for a space elevator.
 
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