Friday, June 27, 2008

Target Earth

Target Earth: How Prepared Are We? - The Planetary Society - The Planetary Society reminds us of the 100 year anniversary of the Tunguska event the upcoming Monday. They've started an effort called Target Earth to address this risk. The Apophis Mission Design Competition is one part of this effort. Other efforts include the Gene Shoemaker Near-Earth Object Grants and an advocacy effort to save the Aricebo telescope, which among other things tracks NEOs. They're also involved with the show Asteroid Trackers, a Discovery Canada show planned for the 100 anniversary date.

Briefs: Smallsat Conference; NEOSSat - In part of this post RLV News points out a low-cost Canadian smallsat that's designed to track NEOs: Canadian-led space project designed to spot planet-killer asteroids - - An excerpt:

A one-of-a-kind, $12-million satellite mission to be launched by the Canadian Space Agency in 2010 will track at least some of the tens of thousands of large asteroids within striking distance of Earth.


NEOSSat is one of a new generation of "microsatellites" filling a niche in space exploration. It will be the size of a large suitcase, weigh less than 75 kilograms and be designed and built in three years.

Not only will the satellite help detect asteroids, it will also observe other satellites to prevent collisions between them.