Astrophysics (Index)About

near-Earth object

(object orbiting the Sun that passes close to Earth)

A near-Earth object (NEO or if specifically an asteroid, near-Earth asteroid or NEA) is an object, such as a comet or asteroid, in solar orbit that passes near Earth. An Earth-crossing asteroid (ECA) is an asteroid whose orbital path crosses that of Earth. A fast moving object (FMO) is an observed astronomical object that appears moving very fast, undoubtedly a NEO. All these are of special interest because of the potential for a future impact with Earth (those most likely are termed potentially hazardous objects, PHOs, or if specifically asteroids, potentially hazardous asteroids, PHAs), and a number of surveys aim to identify them:

Near-Earth objects are also useful destinations for space probes, such as OSIRIS-REx visiting 101955 Bennu. Comets and asteroids passing close to Earth are among the easiest to reach.

NEOs are also classified according to a comparison of their orbits with that of Earth, each type referred to by the name of the first such asteroid discovered:

The independent term Arjuna has been coined for any of these with orbits much like Earth's.

(object type,solar system)
Further reading:

Referenced by pages:
asteroid belt
101955 Bennu
Campo Imperatore Near-Earth Object Survey (CINEOS)
Catalina Sky Survey (CSS)
Mars crosser (MC)
minor planet
minimum orbit intersection distance (MOID)
Minor Planet Center (MPC)
Planet Crossing Asteroid Survey (PCAS)
supernova survey
solar system
Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE)