25 October 2008

Canadian Asteroid Defense & Schedule of Events

Check out this new Canadian-based Global Asteroid Protection Society:


They join a long-line of organizations which have called for action:
Space Frontier Foundation: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.space-frontier.org/Projects/TheWatch/
Association of Space Explorers: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.space-explorers.org/
B612: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.b612foundation.org/press/press.html
ProSpace: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.prospace.org/
Planetary Society: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.planetary.org/programs/projects/apophis_competition/
AIAA: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.aero.org/conferences/planetarydefense/ & position paper: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.planetarydefense.info/resources/pdf/Asteroids-Final.pdf
Gaia Shield Group: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://gaiashield.com/two.html
Lifeboat Foundation: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.lifeboat.com/ex/asteroid.shield
Secure World: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=
National Space Society: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.nss.org/settlement/asteroids/
Marsdrive: https://webmail.hq.af.mil/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://marsdrive.com/news/asteroid-to-hit-mars.html

Which reminds me, the Canadians have a project called NEOSat, which will spend half its time doing Space Situational Awarness, and the other half doing search for Asteroids. It will use a 15cm diameter telescope. It is about the size of suitcase, and weighs 65kg. They hope to launch it in 2010. Unfortunately, it still apparently needs to find an opportune ride to orbit...perhaps on a polar weather satellite.

The Europeans are also doing interesting work. They are pushing the asteroids onto the agenda for SSA. Currently they still have Don Quiote mission on the books, and one can hope against their troubles that they will not completely abandon it. Particularly in Britain, leading Study Group 14 for the UN COPUOS, and Dr. M. Vasile who is comparing a number of different methods continues to turn out useful work comparing various options.
Another interesting site that will get quite a bit more press early next year is the international Association of Space Explorers (ASE), theinternational organization of astronauts and cosmonauts from 33 countries:
Not in particular this paper, which says:
- Within 10-15 will be tracking~300,000 NEOS =>45m (Tunguska Size) due to projected upgrades, of which 10,000 will have non-zero probability of earth impact in next 100 years and 50-100(.5-1%) are likely to appear threatening enough to warrant active monitoring or deflection!

Back in the US, the official site for the Iowa State Asteroid Deflection Center (ADRC), where eventually the presentations will be posted.

In fact, here is the layout for near term events:
- Dec 2008 - Dedicated National Space Society (NSS) Ad Astra magazine
- Spring 2009, Association of Space Explorers (ASE) issues its report, "Asteroid Threats: A Call for Global Response" to the United Nation's Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space
- March 23-27 Lunar & Planetary Science Conference
- April 23-24 Space Law Conference: Near Earth Objects (NEOs): Risks and Opportunities, Lincoln, Nebraska
- April 27-30 International Planetary Defense Conference, Grenada, Spain
- October 2010 National Research deadline of review of NASA NEO report to congress
- October 2010 The deadline for the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to recommend a lead agency to Congress


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