2003 QQ47

From Academic Kids

2003 QQ47
Discovery A (http://cfa-www.harvard.edu/iau/lists/NumberedMPs.html)
Discoverer LINEAR
Discovery date August 24, 2003
Alternate
designations
  B (http://cfa-www.harvard.edu/iau/MPDes.html)
Category Apollo asteroid
Orbital elements C (http://asteroid.lowell.edu/)
Epoch October 22, 2004 (JD 2453300.5)
Eccentricity (e) 0.187
Semi-major axis (a) 162.380 Gm (1.085 AU)
Perihelion (q) 132.005 Gm (0.882 AU)
Aphelion (Q) 192.756 Gm (1.288 AU)
Orbital period (P) 413.057 d (1.13 a)
Mean orbital speed 28.34 km/s
Inclination (i) 62.102
Longitude of the
ascending node
(Ω)
1.014
Argument of
perihelion
(ω)
105.042
Mean anomaly (M) 290.754
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 1.24 km
Mass 2.01012 kg
Density 2.0? g/cm
Surface gravity 0.0003 m/s
Escape velocity 0.0007 km/s
Rotation period  ? d
Spectral class  ?
Absolute magnitude 17.3
Albedo 0.10?
Mean surface
temperature
~267 K

2003 QQ47 (also written 2003 QQ47) is an asteroid which became famous briefly upon its discovery in late August 2003 when media outlets played up a preliminary report that it had a 1:250,000 chance of colliding with Earth on March 21, 2014.

A NASA spokesman said,

"Newly discovered asteroid 2003 QQ47 has received considerable media attention over the last few days because it had a small chance of colliding with the Earth in the year 2014 and was rated a "1" on the Torino impact hazard scale, which goes from 0 to 10. The odds of collision in 2014, as estimated by JPL's Sentry impact monitoring system, peaked at 1 chance in 250,000, a result which was posted on our Impact Risk Page on Saturday, August 30, 2003. Impact events at the Torino Scale 1 level certainly merit careful monitoring by astronomers, but these events do not warrant public concern. In fact, each year several newly discovered asteroids reach Torino Scale 1 for a brief period after discovery; 2003 QQ47 is the fourth such case this year.
On September 2, 2003, new measurements of QQ47's position allowed us to narrow our prediction of its path in 2014, and thus we could rule out any Earth impact possibilities for 2014." [1] (http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news138.html)

2003 QQ47 has a diametre of approximately 1.24 km, and a mass of approximately 2.0×1012 kg. If it were to hit the Earth, it would be a major event, with an energy of approximately 350,000 megatons (1.5 ZJ), enough to cause global damage.

Dr. Sara Russell, a meteorite researcher at London's Natural History Museum, told the BBC that she was not worried that 2003 QQ47 would be a danger.

"The odds are very, very low... We have to keep some kind of perspective," she said.

See the article on risk for more on dread, the perception of risk.

As a result of the press coverage of asteroids such as 2003 QQ47, astronomers are now planning to re-word the Torino scale, or to phase it out completely in favour of a scale which is less likely to generate false alarms which may reduce public confidence in genuine alerts.

External links



The minor planets
Vulcanoids | Main belt | Groups and families | Near-Earth objects | Jupiter Trojans
Centaurs | Trans-Neptunians | Damocloids | Comets | Kuiper belt | Oort cloud
(For other objects and regions, see: Binary asteroids, Asteroid moons and the Solar system)
(For a complete listing, see: List of asteroids. For pronunciation, see: Pronunciation of asteroid names.)
fr:(2003) QQ47
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