Earth Vulnerable To Potential Catastrophic Asteroid Strike, White House Science Chief Says
According to John Holdren, director of the White House's Office of Science and Technology Policy, Earth is still vulnerable to a potential catastrophic asteroid strike and NASA has substantial progress in finding that asteroids can be a threat.
"We are not fully prepared, but we are on a trajectory to get much more so," Holdren said yesterday, Sept. 14 at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, during a dialogue of the agency's planned Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM).
Holdren named the February 2013 meteor explosion over the city of Chelyabinsk in Russia and 1908 Tunguska airburst and these are reasons to take asteroid threat seriously.
Chelyabinsk was struck by a 65-feet or 20 meter-wide object resulting in 1,200 injured people. Whereas the Tunguska event was even more destructive. The space rock that hit Tunguska was about 130 feet wide or 40 meters and exploded over a mostly unpopulated region in Siberia. It flattened about 800 square miles or 2,070 square kilometers of the forest. Both of the events shocked the world.
"We know that this does happen." Said Holdren. "Strikes such as what happened in Chelyabinsk are thought to happen once in every hundred years, while Tunguska is regarded as a once in 1,000 years event."
The ARM can educate us, Holdren added. By late 2021, NASA is aiming to launch a robotic probe toward an asteroid near Earth. It is a 1,300 feet wide asteroid called 2008 EV5. After reaching the asteroid, the space probe will investigate the potential of a deflection strategy known as the "enhanced gravity tractor."
The agency officials said that the probe will return to Earth, eventually placing the boulder in orbit around the moon. Astronauts aboard NASA's Orion Space Capsule will then visit the purloined rock in the mid-2020s.
The ARM costs $1.25 billion. It is expected to help researchers learn more about asteroids and the resources they possess, demonstrate many of the technologies needed to get astronauts to Mars, help the agency practice human operations in deep space and improve the skills that will be needed to deflect a potentially dangerous asteroid someday.
Elon Musk's Space X To Recommence Launches In November
Elon Musk announced that Space X Reaches will resume flights in November after its recent accident inn September. However, a company spokeswoman said that Novermber is the best case scenario and possibly the relaunch of SpaceX might go beyond November.
The Parallel Universe Of NASA And Star Trek
For all we know, NASA and Star Trek could very well be in a parallel universe. It's never been more evident now.
NASA Owes Mars Explorations To These Amazing Robots
These robots have been instrumental in NASA's relentless search of life in Mars.
NASA Needs to Keep Up With Today’s Context of Space Exploration, Says PPIRB
Planetary Protection Independent Review Board (PPIRB) calls NASA to update planetary protection policies
NASA’s Mars Rover Is As Cool As The Batmobile SUV
NASA unveiled a concept for a Mars Rover and it looks a lot like the Batmobile.
MORE IN ITECHPOST
Does a Faster IT Network Mean Better Customer Service?
For most companies, there's a notion that the people they employ are the difference between poor customer service and a fantastic customer experience.
How Do Personal Emergency Response Systems Work?
Personal emergency response systems, known as PERS for short, are systems that help people to raise the alarm and get immediate help when a medical or personal emergency occurs. They are ideal for older people and anyone with a mobility issue or an injury or illness that can cause falls.
Game Developers’ Different Roles in the Studio
Learn about the different professionals involved in developing video games. Becoming a game developer is one of the coolest jobs around and your 14-year-old self, perched on the edge of your bed as you play PlayStation, will thank you for making such an awesome career move.