Given the history of planetary destruction from meteor strikes in the past, trying to stop them from impacting our now vastly more populated planet seems like a good idea, but one wonders if it’s realistic. NASA is working on it, regardless, reports The Christian Science Monitor:
This month’s meteor detonation above the Russian city of Chelyabinsk and Earth’s close shave with asteroid 2012 DA14 have kick-started conversations on lessons learned and what steps can be taken to prevent space rock impacts in the future.
One positive action item was actually in place prior to the dual asteroid events of Feb. 15: a new Memorandum of Agreement between the Air, Space, and Cyberspace Operations Directorate of the Air Force Space Command and NASA’s Science Mission Directorate.
The recent Russian meteor event occurred after completion of the newly signed agreement and data on the recent Chelyabinsk event had been released for scientific analysis, SPACE.com has been informed by NASA and the U.S. Air Force.
As a result of that agreement, NASA’s Near Earth Object (NEO) Observation Program is receiving information on bolide/fireball events “based on analysis of data collected by U.S. government sensors.” [Russian Fireball: All You Need to Know (Video)]
The asteroid that caused the Chelyabinsk meteor was estimated to be about 55 feet (17 meters) across with a weight of 10,000 tons. Its explosion in the atmosphere was equivalent to nearly 500,000 tons of TNT, scientists say…
[continues in The Christian Science Monitor]