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  • NASA is on the hunt for an asteroid to capture with a robotic spacecraft, redirect to a stable orbit around the moon, and send astronauts to study in the 2020s -- all on the agency's human Path to Mars. Agency officials announced on Thursday recent progress to identify candidate asteroids for its Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), increase public participation in the search for asteroids, and advance the mission's design.
    NASA plans to launch the ARM robotic spacecraft in 2019 and will make a final choice of the asteroid for the mission about a year before the spacecraft launches. NASA is working on two concepts for the mission: the first is to fully capture a very small asteroid in open space, and the second is to collect a boulder-sized sample off of a much larger asteroid. Both concepts would require redirecting an asteroid less than 32 feet (10 meters) in size into the moon’s orbit. The agency will choose between these two concepts in late 2014 and further refine the mission’s design.


    http://www.nasa.gov/press/2014/june/.../#.U6g_nEBfV8c


    Credo quia absurdum.


    Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

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    • Saving the Earth by Inches per Second

      Just continuing the thread -

      ... Will we be able to turn it away before it strikes? According to Don Yeomans, manager of NASA’s Near Earth Object program at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., there are only three ways to increase our chances against an asteroid aimed at Earth: “Find it early; find it early; find it early.”
      https://www.asme.org/engineering-top...hes-per-second
      Any metaphor will tear if stretched over too much reality.

      Questions about our site? See the FAQ.

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      • Originally posted by GCoyote View Post
        So other than being lucky, the last paragraph sums it well;

        "So Earth has the technology, potentially. What it needs is time. According to Yeomans, using today’s technology means we’d need a decade’s head start to deflect an asteroid. The harder we look, the better off we’ll be."
        TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

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        • Chelyabinsk: Portrait of an asteroid airburst

          A pretty good and reasonably non-technical article on what we've learned since our most recent cosmic wake-up-call.

          With Chelyabinsk, scientists can, for the first time, link the damage from an impact event to a well- determined impact energy in order to assess the future hazards of asteroids to lives and property. Using methods of quantitative risk assessment, one can estimate the range of probabilities of various events and the consequences of those events. Asteroid impacts represent a classic low-probability, high-consequence risk: very unlikely but potentially catastrophic. 14 Moreover, the greatest contributor to long-term risk is from the most improbable but largest impacts, which can lead to civilization collapse or even human extinction. Fortunately, the largest are also the easiest to discover, and about 90% of nearby objects greater than 1 km in diameter have been cataloged. And because none are on a collision course, the assessed risk from large asteroids has dropped since the survey began by more than an order of magnitude.
          http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip...1063/PT.3.2515
          Any metaphor will tear if stretched over too much reality.

          Questions about our site? See the FAQ.

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          • This double vortex system makes me feel much better (I sleep better at night) as it makes very good sense from a physics standpoint (it's a 2-D mushroom cloud). It is also a "relatively" simple computer model to make with meaningful results (unlike complex climate models).





            My initial reaction to this double plume was nuke-missile/anti-missile. This is a terrifying concept. In retrospect I hope it was a "natural" event.

            However, big chunks of rocks hitting the Earth are also a fearsome concept. Typical impact velocities are 20 km/s. "It's not a matter of IF", it's a matter of when/where/how bad we get hit next time....
            Attached Files
            Battles are dangerous affairs... Wang Hsi

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            • Originally posted by Pirate-Drakk View Post
              This double vortex system makes me feel much better (I sleep better at night) as it makes very good sense from a physics standpoint (it's a 2-D mushroom cloud). It is also a "relatively" simple computer model to make with meaningful results (unlike complex climate models).





              My initial reaction to this double plume was nuke-missile/anti-missile. This is a terrifying concept. In retrospect I hope it was a "natural" event.

              However, big chunks of rocks hitting the Earth are also a fearsome concept. Typical impact velocities are 20 km/s. "It's not a matter of IF", it's a matter of when/where/how bad we get hit next time....
              Reminds me of an "experiment" conducted several years ago while shooting at a local 'range'/quarry. Took a 12 gauge pump shotgun and three types of rounds where the propellant and projectile (shoot) where all fairly equal.

              TARGET was a round double basin washing machine c. 1930s.

              SHOTS were bird, about 7-8 range, Buck~00, and Slug.

              Bird dented first layer, spare to little penetration.

              Buck~00 (equals about 9 x 9mm Luger., clustered) penetration to second, far-side layers, with dents but no penetration.

              Slug - punched thru all and kept going.

              LESSON LEARNED :

              Mass, concentrated is more destructive than Mass Diffused.

              If "a rock" is on impact course to Earth, the more pieces one can break it up into, the less DEEP and Destructive its impact. Not only is mass and trajectories scattered, but surface area to atmospheric ablation is increased significantly.

              Better many smaller pieces than one large rock!
              TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

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              • It's being worked on. You should contact your congress critter to get more funding...

                http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/as.../#.VCqiU1ePzpE

                Also you personally could get involved.

                Informing NASA’s Asteroid Initiative: A Citizen Forum

                August 28, 2014




                NASA is finding asteroids, including those that might threaten our home planet, and sending humans to explore one. The agency is engaging the public in the Asteroid Grand Challenge to find all asteroid threats to human population and know what to do about them, accelerating NASA's existing planetary defense work. NASA is also developing a first-ever mission to identify, capture and redirect a near-Earth asteroid to a stable orbit around the moon, where astronauts will explore it in the 2020s, returning with samples. This Asteroid Redirect Mission is part of NASA’s plan to advance the new technologies and spaceflight experience needed for humans to pioneer Mars in the 2030s.






                NASA wants to know what the public thinks about how the agency is accomplishing both the Asteroid Grand Challenge and the Asteroid Redirect Mission, what inspires them about exploration, and what they think is valuable in the mission to find, capture, move and explore an asteroid.
                Last year, the agency asked for ideas on how to engage the public directly in the Asteroid Initiative. One highly-rated response to the Asteroid Initiative Request for Information was the Expert and Citizen Assessment of Science and Technology, a consortium of respected universities, science centers and non-governmental organizations. After a presentation at the 2013 Asteroid Initiative Workshop, NASA chose to award the ECAST consortium a cooperative agreement to conduct peer-to-peer deliberations and solicit citizen input on NASA's asteroid initiative.


                http://www.nasa.gov/content/informin...citizen-forum/
                Credo quia absurdum.


                Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

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                • Originally posted by G David Bock View Post
                  ... If "a rock" is on impact course to Earth, the more pieces one can break it up into, the less DEEP and Destructive its impact. Not only is mass and trajectories scattered, but surface area to atmospheric ablation is increased significantly.

                  Better many smaller pieces than one large rock!
                  The thing about increasing the ablation area is it cuts two ways. That's the same mechanism that rapidly transfers heat to the atmosphere to produce an air burst. If you want to break up an incoming asteroid you'd have to do it far enough away in space and time for the bits to become widely separated so most would miss the Earth.
                  Any metaphor will tear if stretched over too much reality.

                  Questions about our site? See the FAQ.

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                  • This neat dude (among esteemed others) says...

                    ...not if...just when.
                    Youthful Exuberance Is No Match For Old Age And Treachery.

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                    • Yep. That's why Nasa is pushing the capture idea. Because if we can capture them and put them in a Lagrange point we can start harvesting them.

                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lagrangian_point
                      Credo quia absurdum.


                      Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

                      Comment


                      • Admit it. You just want to pan for gold on a space rock.
                        Any metaphor will tear if stretched over too much reality.

                        Questions about our site? See the FAQ.

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                        • Yeah, there's that. And saving us from global extinction as a motivator.

                          Besides the solar sail is such a elegant solution.

                          Weighs next to nothing, yet yields thrust time and time again.

                          It really matters when you have to lift it out of our gravity well...

                          http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/td...erview_prt.htm

                          Credo quia absurdum.


                          Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Bwaha View Post
                            ...

                            It really matters when you have to lift it out of our gravity well...

                            http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/td...erview_prt.htm

                            It still takes a rocket to get the sail into low Earth orbit. However, if you could make a gigantic Solar Sail, launch it with a huge rocket, and attach it to an asteroid far enough from the Earth, you would be able to change the rocks trajectory just enough to avoid an impact.

                            This might also work for a capture mission but one would have to do the logistics of how big a sail would move how big a rock over some amount of time.
                            Battles are dangerous affairs... Wang Hsi

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                            • Yes.

                              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravitational_keyhole

                              It is rocket science.
                              Credo quia absurdum.


                              Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

                              Comment


                              • Hey I bet I can get some of the slac crowd together for a bbq next summer.

                                You in?
                                Credo quia absurdum.


                                Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

                                Comment

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