2 Indian School Girls Discover Asteroid
General
Aug 1, 2020

Two Indian schoolgirls have discovered an asteroid which is slowly shifting its orbit and moving toward Earth.

Two Indian schoolgirls have discovered an asteroid which is slowly shifting its orbit and moving toward Earth.

Radhika Lakhani and Vaidehi Vekariya, both studying in 10th std, in Surat, Gujarat, were participating in a Space India and NASA project, which allows students to analyze images taken by a telescope positioned at the University of Hawaii. Aakash Dwivedi, senior educator and astronomer at Space India, said that students across India were taught how to spot the celestial bodies using software which analyzes images collected by NASA. Students then observed these images and looked for moving objects in the pictures. The project was intended to involve and educate students in science and astronomy. This is how the two school girls discovered the asteroid. They have named it HLV2514 .

Vaidehi Vekariya said, "I look forward to when we will get a chance to name the asteroid," However it can be officially named only after NASA confirms it will pass by Earth. The asteroid is presently near Mars and is expected to pass Earth in about one million years' time. Asteroids are taken very seriously by NASA. Because asteroids pose a potential threat to Earth and scientists discover thousands of them each year. In 2013, an asteroid heavier than the Eiffel Tower exploded over central Russia, leaving more than 1,000 people injured from its shockwave.