This asteroid was "lost" and then found again. They were not able to predict when it will return due to the lack of observations on its orbit. On May 8, 2018 - nearly eight years later - astronomers discovered an asteroid and gave it the temporary designation ZJ99C60. Asteroids like Eros and 2010 WC9 offer huge scientific and commercial opportunities.
This window, which is one of the nearest ever approaches of an asteroid this size, will be at approximately 10:05 p.m. UTC or 6:05 p.m. EDT.
The asteroid that would be moving at an estimated distance of about 203,453 kilometers (126,419 miles) could be reportedly witnessed even by the help of a small telescope.
NASA's JPL also said that the 2010 WC9 will not come this close to our planet for another 300 years.
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An asteroid somewhere between the size of New York's Statue of Liberty and Italy's Leaning Tower of Pisa is set to fly safely past Earth on Tuesday. After a few weeks, the scientists lost track of the asteroid. At no time will it be visible to the eye as it sweeps past Earth.
The asteroid will fly over the earth at a staggering 28,000 miles per hour and it will be between 60 and 130 meters.
"If you want to watch an asteroid from the couch, you can do this too: we plan to broadcast from the telescope on the night of May 14 (closest to the day before approaching) as long as the weather allows!" The broadcast will be less than 25 minutes in duration, as the asteroid will cross our field of view within that period of time.
"Our display will update every five seconds", Guy Wells tells EarthSky in an email. We are of course collecting astrometric data whilst this is happening, but the motion of the asteroid will be apparent every five seconds! After almost eight years the staff of the American Observatory was again able to fix 2010 WC9. Soon recognizing it was the long-lost 2010 WC9, they reverted back to its original title. That's about half the distance from the moon. This means that the close encounter on May 15 will be a safe one for our planet.