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Asteroid Safety...Are we safe? [merged]

charles bolden pray asteroid

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53 replies to this topic

#31    Frank Merton

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 09:34 AM

There are maybe a dozen ways humanity could become extinct.  Each has small odds.  The trouble is when you start adding up a bunch of small odds the result is not so unlikely


#32    highdesert50

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Posted 24 March 2013 - 01:39 PM

I am unsure we can avert every civilization buster that threatens us, whether it be a huge asteroid or some rogue viral pandemic. We could, for example, begin the process of populating other planets, such as the moon or mars, to increase our odds of perpetuating our civilization. The question is really whether we can move beyond our petty earthly squabbles and work toward more noble goals.


#33    dummy2b

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Posted 24 March 2013 - 04:07 PM

WE COULD UN-POPULATE THE EARTH AND START OVER SINCE WE HAVE SCREWED IT UP SO BAD.


#34    Junior Chubb

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Posted 24 March 2013 - 11:48 PM

Quote

What is the risk of extinction by asteroid ?

Ask the Dinosaurs...


View Postskookum, on 21 March 2013 - 08:46 AM, said:

Point I am getting too is maybe we could simply relocate people if we knew an impact was imminent if the technology isn't there to stop them.

Hopefully this could be an option, but either way your post did make me think.

How accurate are these 'predictions' of the after effects of an impact and do they err on the side of caution or exaggerate for a wow/fear factor. We won't know exactly until it happens.

I would hope we could create a better situation of things than the Dinosaurs (if you go for impact as a reason for their demise) as we do have a few advantages over them.

I've flown from one side of this galaxy to the other. I've seen a lot of strange stuff, but I've never seen anything to show me where the hell Helen of Annoy has been for the past couple of months.

#35    Hawkin

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 04:29 AM

View Postdummy2b, on 24 March 2013 - 04:07 PM, said:

WE COULD UN-POPULATE THE EARTH AND START OVER SINCE WE HAVE SCREWED IT UP SO BAD.

Yeah, hate to sound like a doom gloomer but with a current world population of 7 billion and growing
it's putting a strain on our natural resources. Back in the early 1960's the worlds population was half
of what it is now. Nature always seems to thin the heard out when it becomes too many.
One can hope that it doesn't happen in their lifetime.

It's good to have some skepticism so you won't be gullible & naïve. But to much skepticism
can make you narrow minded to all possibilities no matter how unconventional.

#36    Raptor Witness

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 05:14 AM

NASA needs something to keep it alive. As with most government institutions, an enemy is essential to their survival.

What they won't tell you, is that a storm is coming. A new kind of storm.

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#37    Frank Merton

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 05:46 AM

The threat of an asteroid or comet wiping out humanity is miniscule in the extreme; the threat of one even destroying a major city is extremely small.  So why bother?

Of course the reason is because the consequences are so severe.  Basic risk managment is not just about the chances of something happening but about the product of the chance and the consequence.

What do we do?

First (and this is already well underway), we identify and plot the orbits of every asteroid that presents a potential danger.  The bigger ones are already identified (at least those that have relatively short-term orbits), and smaller threats are being mapped.  It is hard to calculate the orbit of smaller objects out more than a few decades because unpredicted things can perturb their orbits (collisions, perturbations, even that they have odd shapes and hence get unexpectedly influenced by solar pressure).  Therefore ongoing monitoring will be needed

It is always possible that something can happen out in the asteroid belt and send an object hurtling in toward us, so eventually we need to have plotted every object in the entier solar system.  This has benefits to astronomy beyond the risk management aspect, so should be done anyway.

Now this tells us about most threats, and in most cases gives us a long warning time.  What next?  Well of course if one is headed our way we need to do something about it.  This is not as simple as it may seem.  Merely blowing one up could make the problem worse -- rather than one object we get dozens coming in.  With a long lead time it would be better to nudge the object into a different orbit, using one of a variety of methods that appear to be possible.

At the same time we need to address the possibility of a comet or a really long period asteroid or an asteroid that suddenly gets a dangerous orbit showing up.  In these cases, with constant monitoring, we would have a lead time now of at least six months; over time this will be lengthened to a period of maybe a few years.  Intercepting such an object would require brute force of some sort -- comets are not small and destroying one would be a touchy and difficult business -- one that we need more knowledge about comets and that we need to study -- but a necessary one.  At the moment we are a sitting duck.


#38    Lex540

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 06:17 AM

you have the coolest tech but cant stop an asteroid poor guys


#39    Starseed hybrid 1111

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 12:27 AM

NASA doesn't know what a surprise!im kidding guys.anyway the only thing we can do is pray that is the best you can come up with.yeah asteroids have hit the earth but im tired of these theories and hypothesis by NASA and out grown them.


#40    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 12:47 AM

View PostAndromedan Starseed 333, on 26 March 2013 - 12:27 AM, said:

but im tired of these theories and hypothesis by NASA and out grown them.
Really. As you are so much cleverer than NASA then no doubt you will enlighten us with how you would, using currently available technology, protect Earth from an incoming asteroid.

At least NASA is being honest about its limitations in this matter.

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf, 26 March 2013 - 01:11 AM.

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#41    spayneuter

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Posted 27 March 2013 - 11:06 PM

What are the differences between a meteor, asteroid, and comet?


#42    AsteroidX

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Posted 27 March 2013 - 11:27 PM

An asteroid is a meteor while it is still in space going about its merry way. A meteor is an asteroid that enters the earths atmosphere. A meteorite is fragments/pieces of said entry.

A comet is a completely different beast altogether.

In a nutshell.


#43    DieChecker

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 12:12 AM

From what I've read....

An Asteroid is generally larger, but the word can be applied down to gravel apparenly.

A Meteoroid is generally a small asteroid, but extends down to the level of dust. There appears to be a lot of crossover.

A Meteor is when it is in the sky, with a burning tail.

A Mereorite is the stoney part that hits the ground.

But, it is all very nebulous.... The terms are largely interchangable, as you'll hear even experts speak of meteor craters on moons and such. Which would seem to be wrong, since the moons generally have no atmosphere.

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#44    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 01:16 AM

Objects orbiting the sun within the solar system are grouped into 3 categories:

  • Planets
  • Dwarf Planets
  • Small Solar System bodies (SSSB)

Comets and asteroids are both small Solar System bodies.


An asteroid is any small body orbiting the sun which does not show the characteristics of being an active comet. They are also known as planetoids or minor planets

A comet is an icy small solar system body which, when close enough to the Sun, exhibits a coma and/or a tail. The coma and tail are caused by volatile material on the comet's nucleus being vaporised by the solar wind.

Extinct comets are virtually indistinguishable from asteroids. Both comets and asteroids are in the group of bodies known as Small

A meteoroid is an object smaller than an asteroid. It is a term which is not used by the Minor Planet Center, which is the organisation which tracks and catalogues asteroids.

A meteor is any object which enters the atmosphere.

A meteorite is any object which reaches the surface of a planet.

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf, 28 March 2013 - 01:17 AM.

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#45    Mikko-kun

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 02:25 AM

Then a Moon-sized object colliding with the earth would be Mooneorite, right? At least we get the term right if it comes :clap:

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