What can we learn from an asteroid flying past Earth?

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JE

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JE  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Question: What data can we take away from the close encounter with the asteroid, called 2011 CQ1, that came within 3,400 miles (5,471 kilometers) of Earth on Feb. 4.
 
I see that it was the first asteroid that we have observed to flyby this close.  Do we know if the asteroid picked up speed by swinging around the planet?  Are there any other effects on the asteroid or Earth that we could measure during its passing?
 
Thanks for your help.
 
Jim Enix

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 28/02/2011 23:30:03 by _system »