Tonight, Asteroid Iris 7 will be making its closest approach to Earth. The space rock will be in the opposite direction to the sun in an astronomical arrangement known as opposition on the evening of April 30. Astronomers reveal that the asteroid will remain visible until the morning of May 1. How can you watch this astronomical event? Continue reading to find out.
How You Can Observe Asteroid Iris 7 Make its closest approach to Earth
Skywatchers hoping to watch tonight’s astronomical event must prepare ahead of time and know the right direction to point their telescopes for great views. As the asteroid Iris 7 makes its closest approach to Earth tonight, it will appear so bright over our night sky.
Astronomers reveal that the massive main-belt asteroid will be above the horizon for most of April 30 night and stay visible into the morning of May 1. This large asteroid orbits between Mars and Jupiter and it will reach its highest point in the night sky around midnight local time. Astronomers revealed that it will be visible in the constellation of Libra across the world.
In the Sky reveals that asteroid Iris 7 will be visible from New York City from 22:33 EDT (0233 GMT) when the space rock will rise to 21 degrees over the horizon to the southeast. Around 00:46 EDT (0446 GMT), the Iris 7 asteroid will attain its highest point over the night sky. Astronomers reveal that the space rock will disappear from the night sky around 02:59 EDT (0659 GMT) as the asteroid moves below 21 degrees over the horizon to the southwest.
What is the best time to watch Iris 7
The best time to watch Iris 7 is around midnight as the three celestial bodies will be in a straight line while our planet will be standing in the middle of the asteroid and the sun. As the sun moves to its lowest point below the horizon at midnight, the space rock will be at its highest point at that time.
Astronomers said that Iris 7 will come within 179 million miles of Earth during its Perigee tonight. During this celestial event, the asteroid’s brightness will reach a magnitude of 9.6. At this range, the space rock will not be visible to the naked eye. However, you can always catch its best view using a binocular or a telescope. So you should come out tonight with your telescopes and binoculars to capture a fascinating view of this space rock.
What you should know about Asteroid Iris 7
Asteroid Iris 7 was first discovered by J. R. Hind in 1846 as the seventh asteroid to be ever spotted by humans. Astronomers revealed that the space rock is around 124 miles (200 kilometers) wide. Its reflective surface was made possible because of its composition of nickel-iron metals, iron silicates, and magnesium. Hence, Iris 7 composition made it the fourth brightest space rock in the main asteroid belt region. This implies that the asteroid is following Vesta, Ceres, and Pallas in shining so brightly.
During tonight’s astronomical event, asteroid Iris 7 will be making its closest approach to Earth. Even though you cannot spot it with your naked eyes because of its distance, you can still use a telescope or binoculars to capture a fascinating view of the space rock in the constellation of Libra. You can share your images with us at futurespaceworld.com after you are done with your observations.