Asteroid detection and prevention


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Message 3215 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 12:22:04 UTC
There are heavy discussions in other threads about why it is important to compute asteroid properties or detect new ones and what we can do in case we find out that a big rock is going to hit Earth.

So I opened a thread specifically to discuss this.

Other threads mentioned that we have little means to stop larger asteroids from colliding with Earth. This is not entirely true. I saw a video about plans to deflect asteroids using nothing but sunlight :) They are experimenting with using huge mirrors to concentrate sunlight on the asteroids. Concentrated sunlight is surprisingly strong. With just a few moderately large mirrors they can concentrate enough light to melt iron instantly. the plan is to focus a very strong light beam on the asteroid, which would start melting it in one place. The meting would result in the asteroid starting to emit vapor, which is supposed to change its course :)
http://iqjar.com
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Message 3217 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 13:16:31 UTC - in response to Message 3215.  
Well, the first question should be: how good works the detection of asteroids? How much time will be left before impact, how many objects fail to be recogniced? Are there numbers available?
Who tracks the asteroids?
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Message 3218 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 13:29:12 UTC
How good the asteroid detection is is obviously a very important question.
Does Asteroids@Home ever plan to run tasks which aim to detect new asteroids? Currently it's only computing properties of existing ones. Orbit@Home had this purpose but it's frozen and dead. For me it would make sense for A@H to also do this.
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Message 3220 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 16:03:15 UTC - in response to Message 3218.  


Does Asteroids@Home ever plan to run tasks which aim to detect new asteroids? Currently it's only computing properties of existing ones.

Orbit@Home had this purpose but it's frozen and dead. For me it would make sense for A@H to also do this.


Good point. http://orbit.psi.edu/ says, A new version of the system is in the works, and we expect to bring it online in the 2014-2015 period.
But as I know this project it will last until 2017 and then they rerun a batch of old wu's to 'test the system'.

It's really time to pick that up and start a new project or integrate it into an existing project.

I would support it with more cores attached to the project.
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Message 3222 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 18:10:44 UTC - in response to Message 3217.  
Another method discussed for deflecting asteroids is a 'mass driver', where a craft is landed on an asteroid & it then digs up & fires off chunks of the rock into space in a direction that gradually pushes the rock away from earth.

But in my original post in the GPU thread I was under the impression that mikey meant immediately available options (I see I was wrong & that he actually said 'foreseeable future'.
But anyhow, as far as right now goes, AFAIK the only available options are nuclear missiles & the gravity traction method using a random but suitable satellite.

Well, the first question should be: how good works the detection of asteroids? How much time will be left before impact, how many objects fail to be recognised? Are there numbers available?
Who tracks the asteroids?


Well a quick google shows that NASA's doing a fair bit of tracking :)
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroidwatch/
I know that some amateur astronomers are also watching out, in fact a couple discovered the 1 that exploded over Russia recently.
Also NASA are trying to get other people involved http://www.topcoder.com/asteroids/tracker/
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Message 3223 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 19:56:31 UTC - in response to Message 3218.  
How good the asteroid detection is is obviously a very important question.
Does Asteroids@Home ever plan to run tasks which aim to detect new asteroids? Currently it's only computing properties of existing ones. Orbit@Home had this purpose but it's frozen and dead. For me it would make sense for A@H to also do this.


Well, I have been thinking about it. But there is a problem. This is really time consuming. If the Asteroids@home would do this, then everything about it I would have to do myself and the problem is that this is not my full-time job. So this is in a long term plan if my situation changes. But I would really like to start it.
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Message 3225 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 20:41:47 UTC - in response to Message 3223.  

Well, I have been thinking about it. But there is a problem. This is really time consuming. If the Asteroids@home would do this, then everything about it I would have to do myself and the problem is that this is not my full-time job. So this is in a long term plan if my situation changes. But I would really like to start it.


Maybe you get some help from your team?
Would be great to bring 'Orbit' to a new life ...
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Message 3227 - Posted: 13 Jun 2014, 21:45:42 UTC - in response to Message 3223.  
Well, I have been thinking about it. But there is a problem. This is really time consuming. If the Asteroids@home would do this, then everything about it I would have to do myself and the problem is that this is not my full-time job. So this is in a long term plan if my situation changes. But I would really like to start it.


If I were a rich man, God knows I'd offer you 10 times what they pay you at your current job, to work full time on A@H :) Unfortunately I'm not :) Maybe one day somebody with the appropriate financial resources will recognize the potential and importance of this project and enough people with the appropriate expertise will be able to work on it and focus on it 100%...
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Message 3231 - Posted: 14 Jun 2014, 7:07:36 UTC - in response to Message 3227.  
@ Kyong

Is it even possible to discover new asteroids using the freely available data from NASA, ESA and all the ground based telescopes?

If it is possible, what would it take in order for you to start up and run this project? Money; how much?
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Message 3232 - Posted: 14 Jun 2014, 8:18:11 UTC - in response to Message 3231.  
@ Kyong

Money; how much?


And is it a one-time required amount for infrastracture etc?
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Message 3234 - Posted: 14 Jun 2014, 14:46:33 UTC - in response to Message 3225.  

Well, I have been thinking about it. But there is a problem. This is really time consuming. If the Asteroids@home would do this, then everything about it I would have to do myself and the problem is that this is not my full-time job. So this is in a long term plan if my situation changes. But I would really like to start it.


Maybe you get some help from your team?
Would be great to bring 'Orbit' to a new life ...

As I understand it NASA have agreed to fund Orbit@home, it just hasn't got off the ground yet, indications were it would be this year........
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Message 3236 - Posted: 14 Jun 2014, 21:42:44 UTC
Isn't there some way to apply for funding from NASA or from some other institutions? A@H is probably considered by many people a very important project...
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Message 3238 - Posted: 15 Jun 2014, 9:59:28 UTC - in response to Message 3231.  
@ Kyong

Is it even possible to discover new asteroids using the freely available data from NASA, ESA and all the ground based telescopes?

If it is possible, what would it take in order for you to start up and run this project? Money; how much?


It is possible but detection of asteroids is also different from deriving physical properties or calculating its orbits. It is not easy to detect asteroids because of huge space. Many discoveries are from amateur astronomers. Doing some planned sky-survey based on telescopes is difficult if you are able to imagine the huge space in our Solar system and how the telescopes work.
So this is something where searching new detection methods is needed for increasing efficiency.
The important thing for us now would be searching the collisions courses but as you can see, everything depends on having enough time to do it.
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Message 3326 - Posted: 17 Jul 2014, 9:07:26 UTC
Ok, I guess I do not understand what A@H really calculate, I get the feeling we are mashing numbers with out a clear usage. Just what are we currently doing or what data are we creating and to what usage?

Thanks

Lee
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Message 3354 - Posted: 18 Jul 2014, 9:19:51 UTC
Read information on this page http://asteroidsathome.net/. And if you want to know, what exactly you computer is doing, than it is finding the right period from data for an asteroid. This is the part which requires high computer power.
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Message 3363 - Posted: 18 Jul 2014, 17:16:22 UTC - in response to Message 3326.  

Last modified: 18 Jul 2014, 17:45:07 UTC
Ok, I guess I do not understand what A@H really calculate, I get the feeling we are mashing numbers with out a clear usage. Just what are we currently doing or what data are we creating and to what usage?

Thanks

Lee

Yea, like he said that info is here http://asteroidsathome.net/, & from the main page.
Oh & linkified for you Kyong ;)
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Message 4013 - Posted: 12 Feb 2015, 20:54:15 UTC
There is an organization dedicated to the detection and ultimately course correction of potentially destructive asteroids. You can read about it at: http://sentinelmission.org
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Message 4025 - Posted: 15 Feb 2015, 21:41:40 UTC
Former NASA astronaut Ed Lu recently posted this:

http://us5.campaign-archive1.com/?u=c7281b61ab362fadf221e16fc&id=8714e101b5&e=2fdb82295{

to commemorate the second anniversary of the Chelyabinsk event.

Ed Lu is a co-founder and CEO of the B612 Foundation which has, as a principal project, the asteroid detecting Sentinel Mission infra-red space telescope.
He flew on STS-84, STS-106, Soyuz TMA-2, and ISS Expedition 7.
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Message 4044 - Posted: 19 Feb 2015, 13:56:30 UTC
This URL hosts a slightly less than 2 minute video that shows how the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization has detected 26 explosions caused by asteroids in the period from 2000-2013.

http://www.space.com/25590-asteroid-impacts-eart-day-b612-video.html
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Message 4045 - Posted: 19 Feb 2015, 16:12:44 UTC - in response to Message 4044.  
This URL hosts a slightly less than 2 minute video that shows how the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization has detected 26 explosions caused by asteroids in the period from 2000-2013.

http://www.space.com/25590-asteroid-impacts-eart-day-b612-video.html


Sorry, this link brings me to an 404 error.
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Message boards : Cafe : Asteroid detection and prevention