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Caption: On October 12 an asteroid came within 26,000 miles of Earth.

On October 12, a small asteroid came within 26,000 miles of Earth.

NASA reported that the asteroid—2012 TC4—is estimated to be 45-to-100 feet in size and posed no risk of actual impact to Earth.

However, it gave scientists an opportunity to test the ability of a growing global observing network to communicate and coordinate their optical and radar observations in a real scenario.

The closest approach to Earth occurred over Antarctica at about 1:40 a.m.

The asteroid was first discovered by the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System on Hawaii in 2012.

“Asteroid trackers are using this flyby to test the worldwide asteroid detection and tracking network, assessing our capability to work together in response to finding a potential real asteroid-impact threat,” Michael Kelley, program scientist and NASA PDCO lead for the TC4 observation campaign, said in a statement.

In September, asteroid observers were able to conduct a “pre-test” of a coordinated tracking for the close approach of a much larger asteroid called 3122 Florence. Florence, one of the largest known NEOs, at 2.8 miles (4.5 kilometers) in size, passed by Earth on Sept. 1 at 18 times the distance to the Moon.

There are no known asteroids currently predicted to impact Earth for the next 100 years.

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