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Comet To Buzz Earth On Halloween

Vesta gave us a good look at what an asteroid looks like. NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

By Mark Young, SouthFloridaReporter.com Managing Editor, Oct. 22, 2015 – From out of the blue, or should I say black space, we’re suddenly being told about a comet that’s going to “buzz” earth.

First spotted on Oct. 10, scientists say the flyby will occur on Halloween. Uh oh.

Yeah, I know, I too was skeptical thinking this was another internet hoax or conspiracy theory.  I mean, just last month we had groups of doomsayers claiming a comet was about to strike earth between Sept. 15 – 28, but it didn’t happen and life goes on.

But this new comet is for real. Here’s the lowdown:

By Amanda Kooser, CNET.com, Oct. 22, 2015 –We know minute details about the surface of Pluto. A rover’s getting personal with rocks on Mars. But we don’t know everything about space. Sometimes we get some scientifically interesting surprises right up close to Earth. Asteroid 2015 TB145 is one of those.

The asteroid popped up October 10 during a survey by Pan-STARRS I (Panoramic Survey Telescope & Rapid Response System). The telescope’s main job is to spot and track asteroids and comets “that might pose a danger to our planet.” It is constantly discovering new near-Earth asteroids.

Asteroid 2015 TB145 is notable for both its size and how close it will come to Earth. “The flyby presents a truly outstanding scientific opportunity to study the physical properties of this object,” a NASA bulletin notes.

We won’t get another known asteroid this big at this close of an approach until 1999 AN10 arrives in August 2027.