Here is a press roundup from the October 25 NEO event at AMNH:
LA Times: http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-un-asteroid-defense-plan-20131028,0,5301471.story#axzz2j0d9bA2j
Popular Mechanics: http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/space/news/detecting-and-deflecting-a-killer-asteroid-16084695
Universe Today: http://www.universetoday.com/105757/what-if-earth-was-under-attack-by-an-asteroid-astronaut-panel-brings-up-ideas-to-search-deflect-these-threats/
NBC News: http://www.nbcnews.com/science/astronauts-point-next-frontier-stopping-killer-asteroids-8C11459971
Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/25/tyson-asteroids-discussion-livestream_n_4163461.html
The ASE NEO Committee celebrates UN adoption of key components of its Asteroid Threats: A Call for Global Response recommendations with a panel discussion at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.
Read the ASE NEO Statement
Read the Press Release
Agreement for enhanced international coordination to deal with potential asteroid threats reached at
United Nations | Read it
Recommendations of the Action Team on Near-Earth Objects for an international response to the near-Earth object impact threat
27 February 2013
NEO Committee Status report and update | Read it
19 February 2013
Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, on board the International Space Station, talks about the NEO threat | Video
15 February 2013
ASE NEO Committee Chair Tom Jones delivers statement to the UN/COPUOS Scientific and Technical Subcommittee
13 February 2013 Status Update:
Asteroid Flyby, Astronaut Message from Space Station Remind Us We Can Shield Earth from Future Strike
Tom Jones – email@example.com
· Friday (2/15) will see a near-miss of Earth by the biggest asteroid to come this close. 2012 DA14, half the size of a football field, will streak by Earth within 18,000 miles, within the 22,000-mile high orbit of most communication satellites. The asteroid will miss Earth and has a very small chance of hitting any satellite.
· NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab says a close approach from such a large object happens every 40 years or so. On average, an asteroid this big strikes Earth about every thousand years. The last known impact of this size was over Siberia in 1908. The blast energy of DA14 (with a mass of 130,000 tons) is estimated at 2.4 megatons of TNT. That’s enough to wipe out a city.
· Seeing DA14 on its close approach will take dark skies and binoculars or a small telescope. Closest approach is over the Indian Ocean and Indonesia. (see http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov )
· We know there are 500,000 to 1 million asteroids the size of DA14 or larger. So far we have found fewer than 1% of that “cosmic hailstorm” through which we sail in our yearly orbit around the Sun.
· Another impact like the one in 1908 (Tunguska) could happen tomorrow – we can’t predict such an event because our telescopes have a hard time seeing such small asteroids.
· We can prevent these potential disasters: find most of the hazardous asteroids, plan a typical deflection mission, and demonstrate how to nudge a small asteroid in a harmless demonstration.
· The Association of Space Explorers (professional society of astronauts and cosmonauts) recommended in 2008 that the world’s space agencies, working with the UN, together should:
o Conduct a thorough search for hazardous asteroids using new telescopes, sharing the results globally.
o Issue joint warnings for any predicted impacts – a good search will provide ample warning.
o Conduct a mission planning exercise to find the best methods of asteroid deflection.
o Form an international panel to recommend when and how we should attempt to divert an asteroid (and decide how we’ll pay for it)
o Mount an international deflection mission to practice moving a small, harmless asteroid.
· NASA has done most of the discovery work on finding hazardous asteroids and comets, but more can be done – especially search and tracking – by pooling resources and collaborating on mission planning.
· This week at the United Nations in Vienna (Thursday to Monday), most of the world’s space agencies will discuss how to put in place agreements on information sharing, impact warning, deflection mission planning and preparation, and possible cooperative demonstrations in space of how we can prevent an asteroid strike.
· The Association of Space Explorers encourages these productive discussions. The ASE report “Asteroid Threats” in 2008 proposed a framework for international action on impact prevention.