This area will cover relevant news of the threat to the planet from Near Earth Objects (NEOs) including concepts and designs for mitigation. All opinions are those of the author.

19 December 2007

International Primitive Body Exploration Working Group (IPEWG): 14-16 Janaury 2008 (Okinawa, Japan)

From the conference website...

Thanks to successful development of enabling technologies for deep space exploration, missions to small solar system bodies have revolutionized our understanding of the Solar System’s origin and evolution in the last decade.  At present, rendezvous, impact, landing and sample return missions to asteroids and comets such as NEAR-Shoemaker, Hayabusa, Stardust, Deep Impact, Rosetta,Dawn, EPOXI and NEXT as well as New Horizons, a fly-by mission to EKBOs, are completed or still in the middle of operation.

Also more challenging, new missions are under development or under concept studies by several space agencies including Hayabusa-2, Hayabusa Mk-II(Marco Polo), Don Quijote, OSIRIS, and Phobos-Grunt.

In addition to scientific and engineering motivations, NEO studies receive increasing interests in the context of planetary defense, deep space human spaceflight and potential in-situ resource utilization.

In 1980’s, the inter-agency coordination group for Comet Halley exploration proved that synergy of coordinated individual missions could enrich total outcomes more than each result combined.Since then, international exploration working groups participated by international space agencies have been formed and played key roles for advancing fields of solar terrestrial physics, Moon and Mars missions.

As we are entering the second golden age of the primitive body exploration in upcoming decade, now is the appropriate time to create the International Primitive Body Exploration Working Group (IPEWG) in order to promote international collaborations and to maximize outcomes of each mission.  With these in mind, the first IPEWG meeting will be hosted by JAXA at Okinawa,the southern-most, tropical island in Japan. All space agencies, scientists, engineers and other interested stakeholders are cordially invited.

Session-1: Currently Operated Missions Review
(The following is a list of potential presentations)
New Horizons

Session-2: Missions in Preparation & Concepts
(The following is a list of potential presentations)
Marco Polo
NEA Observer
Don Quijote
Small NEO Missions
Apophis Mission
Solar Power Sail
Comet Surface Sample Return

Link: Conference Website

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