Modding is a process
by asteroid or comet?
Published on July 26, 2009 By Zyxpsilon In Everything Else

15 years ago, Shoemaker-Levy rifled up a series of comet debris into the gas giant.

Well, seems like it took an amateur astronomer from Australia by the name of Anthony Wesley to tip Nasa or other professionals on July 19th to aim their telescopes at the event.

Earth would have been slammed to oblivion, btw.

Here's the Hubble "report"!

Nobody was able to detect the object BEFORE such an impact, this time.


Comments (Page 1)
on Jul 26, 2009

I remember learning about how we can't detect most space junk out there, and that there is a very good chance that if a meteor was heading towards earth we would have no way of detecting it unless it happened to pass in front of something else.  I guess it is pretty scary to think about how there could be one of those "invisable" meteors heading our way.

I say, this is why we funnel tons of money into polluting the atmosphere of mars with green house gases, find a way to plant things there, and then way a few hundred years for our new home-away-from home to warm up.

on Jul 26, 2009

I say, this is why we funnel tons of money into polluting the atmosphere of mars with green house gases, find a way to plant things there, and then way a few hundred years for our new home-away-from home to warm up.

Actually, I read something in Scientific American about Mars's soil actually being good for growing stuff in..... if your plants were resistant to radiation (which a lot of planets are) and resistant to cold (which a lot of plants aren't, but we can probably genetically-engineer them to be, even with the technology we have now) you could do it...

on Jul 26, 2009

its a daunting thought alright

on Jul 26, 2009

Pfffffttt, we're SOOOOO lucky we have a spare barely 80 million miles away!

You can prevent & react, but you can't hide an entire planet or its moon from such trajectories.

So, say -- the theorized doomsday asteroid (or comet) isn't grabbed by the gravity pull of Jupiter (and other biggies) and heads up straight towards the sun... all we have to do is watch, cross-fingers & calculate some tricky situations. Duh.

In the meantime, the lucky observer (such as what happened above) can prove the risks, again.

But can't budget a coordinated defense of & by Earth. As if Armageddon & Deep Impact weren't enough, the next comet will obliterate (100% certainty, as of now) humanity unless intercepted.

15 years, that's all it took. Centuries worth of exploration ahead though.

Mars isn't a feasible solution nor is Venus. Earth is.

ET call home. Is it still there?

on Jul 26, 2009

earth is precious because it's the only planet that can sustain us for now. Since we do have time to kill, getting mars ready for colinization is a viable option. Maybe in time it will save us maybe not. However one thingg is certain one way or another at some point we will need to get off earth to survive.

on Jul 26, 2009

The 'if this thing hit Earth' speculation is a pretty big 'if.'  Because of it's sheer size and stronger gravity pull, Jupiter is much more likely to get hit by random stuff.

Well, seems like it took an amateur astronomer from Australia by the name of Anthony Wesley to tip Nasa or other professionals on July 19th to aim their telescopes at the event.

While I am far from well-versed in the area, I'm not even sure if NASA has the funds to properly search for everything heading for Earth, much less be able to spare the luxery of seeing if anything is on a collision course for any other planet.  Their job isn't to idly look out at everything, they have specific goals and purposes and a limited pool of money.  That an amateur astronomer happened to find this while he was looking at Jupiter because he felt like it before those who are don't have any real reason to be watching the planet isn't that surprising.

I'm not saying it's not disconcerting that we don't know everything of what's happening in our own neighborhood, but you can't really make it appear to be NASA's fault.

Zyxpsilon - Can you try to interpret your post into something more coherent?

on Jul 26, 2009

There is a program looking out for planet killing objects around the world (I think its called Project Spaceguard). But the problem is in the area around Australia you have a lot of ocean and its a bit of a dead spot for observation.
When the Australian government was approached to set up some time to track and look out for these objects.

They refused. The government could not justify spending $600,000 a year.

 

on Jul 26, 2009

How do dead spots work when the earth is spinning?  Wouldn't a single rotation give a good sweep of everything?  Is it more of a dead 'stripe', like we can't really see stuff between X and Y latitude lines?

I'd be interested to see how the program works.  Sounds interesting

on Jul 27, 2009

Primal Zed
How do dead spots work when the earth is spinning?  Wouldn't a single rotation give a good sweep of everything?  Is it more of a dead 'stripe', like we can't really see stuff between X and Y latitude lines?

I'd be interested to see how the program works.  Sounds interesting

The telescopes in the southern areas of earth are not as spread out as much as the northern ones. I think it comes down to the amount of time looking for these objects in parts of space. I know that telescopes the U.S.A,Europe and Japan are used to look for them. But if southern countries are not prepared to put in the time or like Australia just don't bother. You will have huge gaps in what space you can look at. Perhaps thats what they mean by 'dead spots'.

Maybe thats why it took an amateur astronomer to tell the professionals about the impact.

Not a good thought.

 

on Jul 27, 2009

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why you want to write your Congresscritter and tell them to fund NASA's NEA observation projects. As it stands, their ability to detect threats is severely limited by a lack of personnel and instrumentation.

on Jul 27, 2009

Vinraith
And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why you want to write your Congresscritter and tell them to fund NASA's NEA observation projects. As it stands, their ability to detect threats is severely limited by a lack of personnel and instrumentation.

Current estimates are that even with trillions to spend they could only track and identify 2% of the potentially hazardous objects in NEAR orbits around the sun (jupiter and closer) ...

And yeah..that's not good money expenditure...better to research getting off this rock...

on Jul 27, 2009

I read another number in "Bild der Wissenschaft" a few Years ago. There they said they would need 1 Million € to obersorve 1 Angleminute in a way that they would detect a dangerous object 1-2 Years ahead. So that would mean they need at least 60*180= 108 Million to cover the sky.. not too bad...

on Jul 27, 2009

Hi!

As usual is wiki also in this case your friend: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comet_Shoemaker-Levy_9

The comet was discovered 16 months before the impact by Shoemakers and Levy. If Anthony Wesley would discover it, it would be named by his name. However Anthony Wesley isn't mentioned on that wiki page. Not at all.

Grottenolm85
they would need 1 Million € to obersorve 1 Angleminute in a way that they would detect a dangerous object 1-2 Years ahead. So that would mean they need at least 60*180= 108 Million to cover the sky.. not too bad...

I'm affraid you forget to multiply your number with ~100,000,000. That's the estimated time in years between two ELE comet/meteor impacts. So basically we have 1 in 100,000,000 chance per year to be hit by large meteor. But each individual in a developed country has about 1 in 1000 chances per year to die in a car accident. Which event you are more afraid off?

BR,  Iztok

 

on Jul 27, 2009




Quoting Vinraith,
reply 10
And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why you want to write your Congresscritter and tell them to fund NASA's NEA observation projects. As it stands, their ability to detect threats is severely limited by a lack of personnel and instrumentation.


Current estimates are that even with trillions to spend they could only track and identify 2% of the potentially hazardous objects in NEAR orbits around the sun (jupiter and closer) ...

And yeah..that's not good money expenditure...better to research getting off this rock...

as I recall, they have mapped an estimated 10%(?) of the NEOs (Near-Earth objects), but can only cover 2% of the sky currently.  with another, oh, around a thousand Spaceguard observatories, they might be able to make a dent in that number, but not currently.

oh, and if one were to come from in front of the sun, we'd be screwed.  we'd only be able to see it for that last few days.

on Jul 27, 2009

It's all good & nice to try tracking down the probable threats; the problem is more about what we CAN do to react in due time.

Want statistics? I'll give you some; vulnerability outweighs the consequences twice and over rather than once.

Trick is, we'd stop spending on any research -- indefinitely. But fear not, there's a fairly good chance (flip a coin, 50%!) the Pacific ocean or the Moon would catch *it.

Crunching numbers isn't counter measure(s), coincidental or predictable.

 

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