Dennis Simmons
Image taken:
Nov. 9, 2011
Brisbane, Qld, Australia
Hello, Here is an animation of the close passage of Near-Earth Asteroid 2005 YU55 as recorded from Brisbane on 9th Nov 2011, between 7:41pm and 7:54pm AEST (UT+10). To minimize the size of the animated gif, I generated a master background image of the stars without the trail of 2005 YU55 and then blended the trail in, frame by frame. Had I not done this, the file size was blowing out to 1.6Mb due to the frame-to-frame background variations that the animated gif was trying to represent. Although it now looks a little too clean and synthetic, the animation does convey the dynamics and energy of this close encounter. It was quite sobering to be able to view the almost full Moon some 20 degrees away, knowing that this lump of rock was now nearer to me than our Moon, passing within 0.85 lunar distances at its closest point. I was astonished at how bright the NEO appeared, having read that results from the Arecibo radar indicated it to be a very dark, nearly spherical object some 400 meters in diameter. Cheers Dennis
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