We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
Posted 01 September 2012 - 10:21 PM
NASA asking for ideas about asteroid detectors
Spaceflight Now said:
NASA is studying the placement of an instrument on a commercial or U.S. government communications satellite to detect and track asteroids near Earth for potential human visits.
The space agency has released a request for information seeking ideas for a sensor to discover a hypothesized set of asteroids very near Earth, opening the possibility for exploration by future astronaut crews.
Instead of funding a dedicated spacecraft to survey asteroid populations, NASA is considering a piggyback instrument on a satellite in geosynchronous orbit, a perch more than 22,000 miles above the equator tailored for communications missions.
"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001
I really feel confident NASA are committed to achieving this on time and will get the support they need. This recession will not last forever and hopefully as wars like Afghanistan come to an end future budgets can allow for missions like this to become a reality.
The most exciting thing and possibly the most important at the moment is privatized space exploration, something I think is being overshadowed by the Chinese claims and efforts.