Asteroid 162082 (1998 HL1)

On October 25, 2019 the “potentially hazardous” asteroid 162082 (1998 HL1) made its closest approach to earth. The asteroid has a diameter of a little over 500 meters and was still more than 6 million kilometers away, which corresponds to 10 earth-moon distances – not so close after all.

Nevertheless, a great opportunity to catch it. Using our TURMX Observatory in Spain, we shot a sequence of images with 120 sec exposure time for a period of little over one hour, starting at about 20:00 UT. We combined the images, without any processing apart from a histogram stretch, to a to movie that you see below.

Can you spot the asteroid? It is moving fast from top to bottom in the left-hand quarter of the image. Already the individual frames show a short track of the asteroid, moving in front of an interesting stellar scenery.