The B612 Foundation and its Asteroid Institute are making progress with their mission to increase the rate of asteroid discovery.

In a just-issued 2021 annual progress report, Danica Remy, President of the B612 Foundation, underscores groundbreaking asteroid discovery capabilities.

“The data is showing us that tools we are building,” Remy explains, “may position us as one of the foremost asteroid discovery institutions in the world.”

Priority project

Specifically, a priority project is called the Asteroid Discovery Analysis and Mapping (ADAM) platform. Researchers have discovered new asteroids that were unnoticed in a previously examined astronomical datasets, made feasible by use of cloud-based computational capability far in excess of anything previously brought to bear on this important problem.

Another effort described in the report is use of a new discovery algorithm named Tracklet-less Heliocentric Orbit Recovery, or THOR for short.

The Vera C. Rubin Observatory, previously referred to as the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST).
Credit: The LSST Corporation (LSSTC)

Principal goals

“ADAM is essentially an astrodynamics computational engine, with a backend system designed for ease of use and development,” points out former astronaut, Ed Lu, Executive Director of the Asteroid Institute.

One of our principal goals for ADAM is to be ready to analyze and interpret the flood of new asteroid discoveries when the Vera Rubin Observatory commences operations in two years,” Lu explains. “We expect that the Vera Rubin Observatory will find several asteroids

each week that have the potential to hit Earth in the coming decades. ADAM will provide an open and transparent means to analyze these asteroid threat cases, which will be critical to the political decision-making process,” he explains in the newly-issued progress report.

 

Risk shifting and sharing

“Deflecting an asteroid impact (likely sooner than we thought given the capabilities we’re developing through THOR and ADAM) will be a planetary decision,” explains Rusty Schweickart, Apollo 9 astronaut and a retired member of the B612 Board of Directors.

“Because of risk shifting and sharing, it will be a very contentious deliberation. With international politicians discussing and debating the issues, an understanding from the general public will be critical if rational decisions are to be made. This is something we’ve seen fail during the COVID pandemic,” Schweickart says. “When science and data are perceived as political, rational decisions are impossible. This is not something the UN alone can handle.”

Launched in 2017, the Asteroid Institute is a program of B612 and is designed to be the international center of excellence for scientific collaboration on the discovery and deflection of asteroids as well as an incubator for new technologies.

The B612 provides a non-governmental voice on the risks, options, and implications of asteroid data while advancing the technical means by which that data is acquired.

To read the informative 2021 annual progress report, go to:

https://b612foundation.org/asteroid-institute-2021-annual-progress-report/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The B612 Foundation through its Asteroid Institute is making progress with their mission to increase the rate of asteroid discovery.

 

In a just issued 2021 annual progress report, Danica Remy, President, B612 Foundation, underscores groundbreaking asteroid discovery capabilities.

 

“The data is showing us that tools we are building,” Remy explains, “may position us as one of the foremost asteroid discovery institutions in the world.”

 

Priority project

 

Specifically, a priority project is called the Asteroid Discovery Analysis and Mapping (ADAM) platform. Researchers have discovered new asteroids that were unnoticed in a previously examined astronomical

datasets, made feasible by use of cloud-based computational capability far in excess of anything previously brought to bear on this important problem.

 

Another effort described in the report is use of a new discovery algorithm named Tracklet-less Heliocentric Orbit Recovery, or THOR for short.

 

Principal goals

 

“ADAM is essentially an astrodynamics computational engine, with a backend system designed for ease of use and development,” points out former astronaut, Ed Lu, Executive Director of the Asteroid Institute.

 

One of our principal goals for ADAM is to be ready to analyze and interpret the flood of new asteroid discoveries when the Vera Rubin Observatory commences operations in two years,” Lu explains. “We expect that the Vera Rubin Observatory will find several asteroids

each week that have the potential to hit Earth in the coming decades. ADAM will provide an open and transparent means to analyze these asteroid threat cases, which will be critical to the political decision-making process,” he points out in the newly-issued progress report.

 

Risk shifting and sharing

 

“Deflecting an asteroid impact (likely sooner than we thought given the capabilities we’re developing through THOR and ADAM) will be a planetary decision,” explains Rusty Schweickart, Apollo 9 astronaut and a retired member of the B612 Board of Directors.

 

“Because of risk shifting and sharing, it will be a very contentious deliberation. With international politicians discussing and debating the issues, an understanding from the general public will be critical if rational decisions are to be made. This is something we’ve seen fail during the COVID pandemic,” Schweickart says. “When science and data are perceived as political, rational decisions are impossible. This is not something the UN alone can handle.”

 

Launched in 2017, the Asteroid Institute is a program of B612 and is designed to be the international center of excellence for scientific collaboration on the discovery and deflection of asteroids as well as an incubator for new technologies.

 

 

 

One Response to “Progress Report: Increasing the Rate of Asteroid Discovery”

  • Kingsley says:

    A very good development.. political shift and matters should be handled amicably not to affect more scientific discoveries

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