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Emily LakdawallaOctober 6, 2008

Round-the-world observations refine asteroid 2008 TC3's path

Thanks to Ron Baalke for posting the following, from JPL asteroid scientist Paul Chodas, on the Minor Planets Mailing List:

Update - 6:45 PM PDT (1 hour prior to atmospheric entry)

Since its discovery barely a day ago, 2008 TC3 has been observed extensively by astronomers around the world, and as a result, our orbit predictions have become very precise. We estimate that this object will enter the Earth's atmosphere at around 2:45:28 UTC and reach maximum deceleration around 2:45:54 UTC at an altitude of about 14 km. These times are uncertain by +/- 15 seconds or so. The time at which any fragments might reach the ground depends a great deal on the physical properties of the object, but should be around 2:46:20 UTC +/- 40 seconds.

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Emily Lakdawalla

Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist for The Planetary Society
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