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.

09 July 2008

Editorial on Apophis and Russian NEO Efforts

From the article...

Meanwhile, Russia is taking steps to improve its monitoring of the dangerous space intruder. The Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos), together with the Defense Ministry and Academy of Sciences, has launched an anti-asteroid program. The first step will see a special radar mounted on a 70-metre telescope in Ussuriisk. The radar will pick up signals reflected by natural space bodies.

The Lavochkin Research and Production Association (NPO Lavochkin) is working on a space program for 2012-2014 that will gather as much information about Apophis as possible. It is also planning a series of experiments to see if the asteroid's orbit could be changed by sustained energy impacts. An unmanned craft is being developed for the purpose, and different flight scenarios considered.

In mid-June, when examining the NASA budget for the next year, the House of Representatives told the Space Agency to cooperate with Russia in all matters concerning asteroids.

The Americans rightly believe that bodies like Apophis threaten all humanity. Republican Congressman Dan Rohrbacher, who pushed for the inclusion of international asteroid cooperation in NASA's budget, thinks the U.S. should share this responsibility with others.

Russia will not stand aloof. It is willing to contribute its RT-70 high-powered antenna system for deep space communications. Its facilities, located in the Far East and Crimea, will effectively complement American facilities in Puerto Rico and California.

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09 July 2008

Article: RIA Novosti

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