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The Impact Imperative: Laser Ablation for Deflecting Asteroids, Meteoroids, and Comets From Impacting the EarthImpacting at hypervelocity, an asteroid struck the Earth approximately 65 million years ago in the Yucatan Peninsula area. This triggered the extinction of almost 70% of the species of life on Earth including the dinosaurs. Other impacts prior to this one have caused even greater extinctions. Preventing collisions with the Earth by hypervelocity asteroids, meteoroids, and comets is the most important immediate space challenge facing human civilization. This is the Impact Imperative. We now believe that while there are about 2000 earth orbit crossing rocks greater than 1 kilometer in diameter, there may be as many as 200,000 or more objects in the 100 m size range, Can anything be done about this fundamental existence question facing our civilization? The answer is a resounding yes! By using an intelligent combination of Earth and space based sensors coupled with an infra-structure of high-energy laser stations and other secondary mitigation options, we can deflect inbound asteroids, meteoroids, and comets and prevent them from striking the Earth.
Document ID
Document Type
Preprint (Draft being sent to journal)
Campbell, Jonathan W.
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL United States)
Phipps, Claude
(Alabama Univ. Huntsville, AL United States)
Smalley, Larry
(Alabama Univ. Huntsville, AL United States)
Reilly, Jim
(Queensborough Community Coll. Bayside, NY United States)
Boccis, Dona
(Queensborough Community Coll. Bayside, NY United States)
Howell, Joe T., Jr.
Date Acquired
September 7, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2002
Subject Category
Lasers And Masers
Meeting Information
Meeting: First International Symposium on Beamed Energy Propulsion
Location: Huntsville, AL
Country: United States
Start Date: November 5, 2002
End Date: November 7, 2002
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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