Recently, the planetary defense community accurately tracked and predicted the time and location of an asteroid impact on Earth that posed no real threat.
NASA reported on the process in detail.
The discovered asteroid, 2022 WJ1, is about 1 meter wide and was first discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey around midnight EST on November 19.
Immediately afterwards, Catalina sent a notification to the Minor Planet Center.
The information was automatically collected by the program, which gave its first assessment seven minutes later: 2022 WJ1 has a 25 percent chance of hitting Earth.
Meanwhile, other astronomers and some amateurs from the Farpoint Observatory continued to track the asteroid.
Observations were maintained until half an hour before the asteroid impact, a total of 3 hours and 46 times, and it eventually landed exactly where and when it was predicted, leaving a stunning image.
The first human prediction of an asteroid was 2008 TC3 in 2008.
2022 WJ1 is the sixth time humans have predicted an asteroid that will hit Earth.
Earlier this year, humans also predicted the imminent impact of asteroid 2022 EB5.
This is the first time that two asteroids have been predicted to hit the Earth in the same year.
The accuracy and capability of the Planetary Defense Line device have been dramatically improved, laying a good foundation for subsequent meteorite research.