1994 WR12

1994 WR12

1994 WR12
Discovered by Carolyn S. Shoemaker
Palomar Observatory (675)
Discovery date 28 November 1994
MPC designation 1994 WR12
Minor planet category Aten NEO[2]
Orbital characteristics[2]
Epoch 1994-Dec-26
Aphelion 1.05 AU (Q)
Perihelion 0.456 AU (q)
0.756 AU (a)
Eccentricity 0.397
0.66 yr
173° (M)
Inclination 6.86°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions ~130 meters[3]
Mass 2.9×109 kg (assumed)[3]

1994 WR12 (also written 1994 WR12) is a near-Earth asteroid[2] with a poorly known orbit.[2] It was first imaged on 26 November 1994,[2] and was discovered on 28 November 1994 by Carolyn S. Shoemaker at Palomar Observatory (675).[1] It has a diameter of about 130 meters,[3] and is listed on the Sentry Risk Table.[4] The next good chance to observe the asteroid may not be until November 2044 when the orbital uncertainty will allow it to pass somewhere between 0.03–0.19AU from Earth.[5]

Virtual clones of the asteroid that fit the uncertainty in the known trajectory show 125 potential impacts between 2054 and 2113.[3] It has about a cumulative 1 in 10,000 chance of impacting the Earth.[3] The poorly known trajectory of this asteroid (Uncertainty=8) is further complicated by close approaches to Venus and Mercury.[5]

It is estimated that an impact would produce the equivalent of 77 megatons of TNT,[3] roughly 1.5 times that of most powerful nuclear weapon ever detonated (Tsar Bomba).

See also


  1. ^ a b "MPEC 1994-Y05 : 1994 WR12". IAU Minor Planet Center. 1994-12-21. Retrieved 2011-10-17. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: (1994 WR12)" (last observation: 1994-12-31;  
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Earth Impact Risk Summary: 1994 WR12". NASA/JPL Near-Earth Object Program Office. Retrieved 2014-07-08. 
  4. ^ "Sentry Risk Table". NASA/JPL Near-Earth Object Program Office. 14 Oct 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-17. 
  5. ^ a b "JPL Close-Approach Data: (1994 WR12)" (last observation: 1994-12-31;