Asteroid (4179) Toutatis passes the Earth

The asteroid (4179) Toutatis, as photographed with the FORS1 multimode instrument at the 8.2-m VLT Kueyen telescope at the ESO Paranal Observatory. At the time of these exposures, the asteroid was about 1,640,000 km from the Earth and moving rapidly across the sky in the southern constellation Ara (The Altar).

The exposure time was 5 min while the telescope was following the normal diurnal motion; the stars now appear as points of light, while the asteroid's long trail crosses the entire field-of-view. Both photos were obtained through a narrow optical filter.

Credit:

ESO

About the Image

Id:eso0430b
Type:Observation
Release date:29 September 2004
Related releases:eso0430
Size:2048 x 2049 px

About the Object

Name:4179 Toutatis
Type:• Solar System : Interplanetary Body : Asteroid
• X - Solar System

Image Formats

Large JPEG
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Colours & filters

BandTelescope
OpticalVery Large Telescope
FORS1

 

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