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Scientists unveil new detectors in race to save Earth from next asteroid

Posted By yihan On February 17, 2013 @ 6:10 am In Featured Stories,Tile | Comments Disabled

Robin McKie
London Guardian [1]
February 17, 2013

The extraterrestrial double whammy that Earth only partially avoided on Friday has triggered an immediate response from astronomers. Several have announced plans to create state-of-the-art detection systems to give warning of incoming asteroids and meteoroids. These include projects backed by Nasa as well as proposals put forward by private space contractors.

In each case, scientists want to develop techniques that can pinpoint relatively small but still potentially devastating meteoroids, comets and asteroids that threaten to strike Earth. These would give notice of impact of several days or possibly weeks and allow threatened areas to be evacuated.

The announcements of the various plans follow Friday’s meteorite crash that caused devastation in Chelyabinsk, Russia. On the same day, a 150ft-diameter asteroid swept to within 17,000 miles of Earth.

The fact that the two events happened together has been dismissed as “a cosmic coincidence” by scientists. Nevertheless, astronomers – many gathered at the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting in Boston this weekend – have been quick to reassure the public that they have plans to provide better warnings of future impacts.

Full story here. [1]

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URLs in this post:

[1] London Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2013/feb/16/scientists-earth-asteroid

[2] Massive asteroid could hit Earth in 2182, warn scientists: http://www.prisonplanet.com/massive-asteroid-could-hit-earth-in-2182-warn-scientists.html

[3] Close Encounter: Earth-Asteroid Near Miss: http://www.prisonplanet.com/close-encounter-earth-asteroid-near-miss.html

[4] Space alert: Hazardous asteroid nears Earth: http://www.prisonplanet.com/space-alert-hazardous-asteroid-nears-earth.html

[5] Fact following fiction? Scientists plan mission to blow up an asteroid ‘hurtling towards Earth’: http://www.prisonplanet.com/fact-following-fiction-scientists-plan-mission-to-blow-up-an-asteroid-hurtling-towards-earth.html

[6] Earth remains safe for now – but what about next asteroid?: http://www.prisonplanet.com/earth-remains-safe-for-now-%e2%80%93-but-what-about-next-asteroid.html

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