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A Constellation of MicroSats to Search for NEOs

Status Report From: arXiv.org e-Print archive
Posted: Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Michael Shao, Hanying Zhou, Slava G. Turyshev, Chengxing Zhai, Navtej Saini, Russell Trahan
(Submitted on 21 Aug 2018)

Large or even medium sized asteroids impacting the Earth can cause damage on a global scale. Existing and planned concepts for finding near-Earth objects (NEOs) with diameter of 140 m or larger would take ~15-20 years of observation to find ~90% of them. This includes both ground and space based projects. For smaller NEOs (~50-70 m in diameter), the time scale is many decades. The reason it takes so long to detect these objects is because most of the NEOs have highly elliptical orbits that bring them into the inner solar system once per orbit. If these objects cross the Earth's orbit when the Earth is on the other side of the Sun, they will not be detected by facilities on or around the Earth. A constellation of MicroSats in orbit around the Sun can dramatically reduce the time needed to find 90% of NEOs ~100-140 m in diameter.

Comments:    6 pages, 4 figures, 3 tables
Subjects:    Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM)
Cite as:    arXiv:1808.06762 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:1808.06762v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Slava G. Turyshev
[v1] Tue, 21 Aug 2018 04:42:39 GMT (481kb)
https://arxiv.org/abs/1808.06762

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