The Increasing Rate of Asteroid Discovery

As we continue to discover new asteroids, we become more aware of the potential threat they pose to Earth.  Amateur skywatchers can now easily monitor near Earth asteroids, which seem to make their closest approaches at more frequent intervals all the time. Below, astronomer turned entrepreneur Scott Manley demonstrates the rate of discovery of these bodies from 1980 to today. Manley points out some of the patterns in those discoveries and the observational quirks that cause them.

 

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