Capping off a busy month for astronomy, an asteroid named 3122 Florence will make a close flyby of our planet.
Named after the founder of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale, this particular asteroid is the largest of the Near Earth Objects to come near the our planet since the first was discovered over 100 years ago.
Florence was discovered in 1981 from the Siding Spring Observatory in Australia.
On September 1, 2017, Asteroid 3122 Florence, also known as Asteroid 1981 ET3, will safely pass by our planet at over 18 times the distance between the Earth and Moon. Among the near-Earth asteroids classified as Potentially Hazardous, Florence is one of the biggest. The Size of 3122 Florence = at least 2.7 miles in diameter.
Closest approach to Earth is expected to occur at about 8:06 am EDT. Although the asteroid will not be able to be seen by the naked eye, you can see it through small amateur telescope, you might be able to see it through binoculars. You should be able to get a glimpse of the asteroid a few nights before September 1st.
Asteroid 3122 Florence will not return until the year 2500.
Rod is a blogger, writer, filmmaker, photographer, daydreamer who likes to cook. Rod produces and directs the web series, CUPIC: Diary of an Investigator. He is also the editor, producer and administrator of STM Daily News, a part of the TNC Network.