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An asteroid that was discovered only four days before it flew by the Earth on June 14 has turned out to be much bigger than first thought.

An asteroid that was discovered only four days before it flew by the Earth on June 14 has turned out to be much bigger than first thought.

This particular asteroid may not have been a danger, but much of the concern was rooted in the late warning of its detection — 2012 LZ1 was spotted only four days before closest approach. One of the reasons for its late discovery is because it was detected in Southern Hemisphere skies, part of the world were we have few asteroid-watching programs. If it had been on a collision course with Earth, a few days notice is no time at all.

So, in the aftermath of the flyby, astronomers at the famous Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico used radar to image the interplanetary interloper (pictured top). What they uncovered was a surprise: Asteroid 2012 LZ1 is actually bigger than thought… in fact, it is quite a lot bigger. 2012 LZ1 is one kilometer wide (0.62 miles), double the initial estimate.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors. The ebook can be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner. Note that the price for the ebook, $3.99, goes up to $5.99 on September 1, 2022.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.

One comment

  • Over at the handy-dandy Earth Impact Effects Program site (, we find that for a 1 km diameter rock and making reasonable assumptions (porous rock asteroid hitting the atmosphere at 17 km/s at a 45 degree angle and impacting into sedimentary rock), anyone closer than 150 miles from the impact point is going to have a very bad day, and 150 miles is about the limit of survivability if you’re caught in the open. Not to see a rock that size until four days prior to closest approach is more than a little disconcerting.

    If anyone visits the site, I recommend reading the .pdf file on the assumptions and background of the program. It’s quite interesting.

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