NASA Spacecraft spots new asteroid - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

NASA Spacecraft spots new asteroid

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Photo: The six red dots in this composite picture indicate the location of the first new near-Earth asteroid seen by NASA's Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE). (NASA) Photo: The six red dots in this composite picture indicate the location of the first new near-Earth asteroid seen by NASA's Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE). (NASA)

Cape Canaveral, Fla. – NASA's recently reactivated spacecraft NEOWISE has spotted a never before seen asteroid.

The Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or NEOWISE, had its first discovery on December 29, 2013.

The mission's software picked out the moving object against a background of stationary stars. As NEOWISE circled Earth scanning the sky, it observed the asteroid several times over half a day before the object moved beyond its view.

"We are delighted to get back to finding and characterizing asteroids and comets, especially those that come into Earth's neighborhood," said Amy Mainzer, the mission's principal investigator from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. 

NEOWISE will continue to detect asteroids and comets in the future.

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