Fri Feb 15, 2013, 03:07 PM
Ichingcarpenter (34,627 posts)
California Scientists Propose System to Vaporize Asteroids That Threaten Earth February 14, 2013
(Santa Barbara, Calif.) 末 As an asteroid roughly half as large as a football field 末 and with energy equal to a large hydrogen bomb 末 readies for a fly-by of Earth on Friday, two California scientists are unveiling their proposal for a system that could eliminate a threat of this size in an hour. The same system could destroy asteroids 10 times larger than the one known as 2012 DA14 in about a year, with evaporation starting at a distance as far away as the Sun.
UC Santa Barbara physicist and professor Philip M. Lubin, and Gary B. Hughes, a researcher and professor from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, conceived DE-STAR, or Directed Energy Solar Targeting of Asteroids an exploRation, as a realistic means of mitigating potential threats posed to the Earth by asteroids and comets.
"We have to come to grips with discussing these issues in a logical and rational way," said Lubin, who began work on DE-STAR a year ago. "We need to be proactive rather than reactive in dealing with threats. Duck and cover is not an option. We can actually do something about it and it's credible to do something. So let's begin along this path. Let's start small and work our way up. There is no need to break the bank to start."
Described as a "directed energy orbital defense system," DE-STAR is designed to harness some of the power of the sun and convert it into a massive phased array of laser beams that can destroy, or evaporate, asteroids posing a potential threat to Earth. It is equally capable of changing an asteroid's orbit 末 deflecting it away from Earth, or into the Sun 末 and may also prove to be a valuable tool for assessing an asteroid's composition, enabling lucrative, rare-element mining. And it's entirely based on current essential technology.
"This system is not some far-out idea from Star Trek," Hughes said. "All the components of this system pretty much exist today. Maybe not quite at the scale that we'd need 末 scaling up would be the challenge 末 but the basic elements are all there and ready to go. We just need to put them into a larger system to be effective, and once the system is there, it can do so many things."
Russia Calls for International Anti-Asteroid System after Meteor
Russia's deputy prime minister Dmitry Rogozin has called for leading powers to work together to develop a system to intercept objects falling from space, after a meteor that exploded over Russia's Ural mountains injured about 1,000 on the ground below.
"Neither we nor the Americans have such technologies," Rogozin told Interfax news agency.
His remarks echoed concerns raised by his boss Dmitry Medvedev, who said the meteor that exploded in the skies over sparesly populated parts of Russia showed how "the whole planet is vulnerable".
The interior ministry raised its initial injury count from 250 to 985 people, including 204 children. They were hurt by falling space debris and sonic blasts shattering windows and damaging buildings in the Chelyabinsk region 1,500km east of Moscow.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin said he thanked god no large fragments of the meteor fell in populated areas.
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California Scientists Propose System to Vaporize Asteroids That Threaten Earth February 14, 2013 (Original post)
Response to Ichingcarpenter (Original post)
Fri Feb 15, 2013, 03:13 PM
littlemissmartypants (6,963 posts)
1. Ichingcarpenter, you
R.O.C.K. me with your science post. Please:
Love, Peace and Shelter. lmsp