Jump to content

Christmas challenge: find mystery asteroid


Recommended Posts

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Similar Topics

    • By NASA
      4 min read
      Preparations for Next Moonwalk Simulations Underway (and Underwater)
      Despite some years with significant snowfalls, long-term drought conditions in the Great Basin region of Nevada, California, Arizona, and Utah, along with increasing water demands, have strained water reserves in the western U.S. As a result, inland bodies of water, including the Great Salt Lake pictured here, have shrunk dramatically, exposing lakebeds that may release toxic dust when dried.Dorothy Hall/University of Maryland Record snowfall in recent years has not been enough to offset long-term drying conditions and increasing groundwater demands in the U.S. Southwest, according to a new analysis of NASA satellite data.
      Declining water levels in the Great Salt Lake and Lake Mead have been testaments to a megadrought afflicting western North America since 2000. But surface water only accounts for a fraction of the Great Basin watershed that covers most of Nevada and large portions of California, Utah, and Oregon. Far more of the region’s water is underground. That has historically made it difficult to track the impact of droughts on the overall water content of the Great Basin.
      A new look at 20 years of data from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) series of satellites shows that the decline in groundwater in the Great Basin far exceeds stark surface water losses. Over about the past two decades, the underground water supply in the basin has fallen by 16.5 cubic miles (68.7 cubic kilometers). That’s roughly two-thirds as much water as the entire state of California uses in a year and about six times the total volume of water that was left in Lake Mead, the nation’s largest reservoir, at the end of 2023.
      While new maps show a seasonal rise in water each spring due to melting snow from higher elevations, University of Maryland earth scientist Dorothy Hall said occasional snowy winters are unlikely to stop the dramatic water level decline that’s been underway in the U.S. Southwest.
      The finding came about as Hall and colleagues studied the contribution of annual snowmelt to Great Basin water levels. “In years like the 2022-23 winter, I expected that the record amount of snowfall would really help to replenish the groundwater supply,” Hall said. “But overall, the decline continued.” The research was published in March 2024 in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.
      “A major reason for the decline is the upstream water diversion for agriculture and households,” Hall said. Populations in the states that rely on Great Basin water supplies have grown by 6% to 18% since 2010, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. “As the population increases, so does water use.”
      Runoff, increased evaporation, and water needs of plants suffering hot, dry conditions in the region are amplifying the problem. “With the ongoing threat of drought,” Hall said, “farmers downstream often can’t get enough water.”
      Gravity measurements from the GRACE series of satellites show that the decline in water levels in the Great Basin region from April 2002 to September 2023 has most severely affected portions of southern California (indicated in red).D.K. Hall et al./Geophysical Research Letters 2024 While measurements of the water table in the Great Basin — including the depths required to connect wells to depleted aquifers — have hinted at declining groundwater, data from the joint German DLR-NASA GRACE missions provide a clearer picture of the total loss of water supply in the region. The original GRACE satellites, which flew from March 2002 to October 2017, and the successor GRACE–Follow On (GRACE–FO) satellites, which launched in May 2018 and are still active, track changes in Earth’s gravity due primarily to shifting water mass.
      GRACE-based maps of fluctuating water levels have improved recently as the team has learned to parse more and finer details from the dataset. “Improved spatial resolution helped in this study to distinguish the location of the mass trends in the Western U.S. roughly ten times better than prior analyses,” said Bryant Loomis, who leads GRACE data analysis at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.
      The diminishing water supplies of the U.S. Southwest could have consequences for both humans and wildlife, Hall said. In addition to affecting municipal water supplies and limiting agricultural irrigation, “It exposes the lake beds, which often harbor toxic minerals from agricultural runoff, waste, and anything else that ends up in the lakes.”
      In Utah, a century of industrial chemicals accumulated in the Great Salt Lake, along with airborne pollutants from present-day mining and oil refinement, have settled in the water. The result is a hazardous muck that is uncovered and dried as the lake shrinks. Dust blown from dry lake beds, in turn, exacerbates air pollution in the region. Meanwhile, shrinking lakes are putting a strain on bird populations that rely on the lakes as stopovers during migration.
      According to the new findings, Hall said, “The ultimate solution will have to include wiser water management.”
      By James R. Riordon
      NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.
      Facebook logo @NASAEarth @NASAEarth Instagram logo @NASAEarth Share
      Details
      Last Updated Jun 17, 2024 EditorRob GarnerContactJames R. Riordonjames.r.riordon@nasa.govLocationGoddard Space Flight Center Related Terms
      Earth Science Climate Science Earth GRACE (Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment) GRACE-FO (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment Follow-on) Science & Research Explore More
      5 min read US, Germany Partnering on Mission to Track Earth’s Water Movement
      Article 3 months ago 5 min read Warming Makes Droughts, Extreme Wet Events More Frequent, Intense
      Scientists have predicted that droughts, floods will become more frequent and severe as our planet…
      Article 1 year ago 9 min read Drought Makes its Home on the Range
      Article 3 years ago View the full article
    • By NASA
      Representatives from NASA, FEMA, and the planetary defense community participate in the fifth Planetary Defense Interagency Tabletop Exercise on April 2 and 3, 2024, to discuss the nation’s ability to respond effectively to the threat of a potentially hazardous asteroid or comet.Credits: NASA/JHU-APL/Ed Whitman NASA will host a virtual media briefing at 3:30 p.m. EDT, Thursday, June 20, to discuss a new summary of a recent tabletop exercise to simulate national and international responses to a hypothetical asteroid impact threat.
      The fifth biennial Planetary Defense Interagency Tabletop Exercise was held April 2 and 3, 2024, at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland.
      NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office, in partnership with FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) and with the assistance of the U.S. Department of State Office of Space Affairs, convened the tabletop exercise to inform and assess our ability as a nation to respond effectively to the threat of a potentially hazardous asteroid or comet. This exercise supports NASA’s planetary defense strategy to protect our planet and continues the agency’s mission to innovate for the benefit of humanity.
      Video of the briefing will stream live on NASA TV and NASA’s YouTube channel.
      The following participants will review the history and purpose of the exercise, the scenario encountered during this year’s simulation, and its findings and recommendations:
      Lindley Johnson, NASA’s Planetary Defense Officer Emeritus, NASA Headquarters, Washington Leviticus “L.A.” Lewis, FEMA detailee to NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office, NASA Headquarters Terik Daly, planetary defense section supervisor, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland To register for the briefing, media must RSVP no later than two hours before the event to Alise Fisher at alise.m.fisher@nasa.gov. NASA’s media accreditation policy is available online.
      While there are no known significant asteroid impact threats for the foreseeable future, hypothetical exercises like this one, which are conducted about every two years, provide valuable insights on how the United States could respond effectively if a potential asteroid impact threat is identified.
      This year’s exercise was the first to include participation by NASA’s international collaborators in planetary defense and the first to have the benefit of actual data from NASA’s successful DART (Double Asteroid Redirection Test) mission, the world’s first in-space technology demonstration for defending Earth against potential asteroid impacts.
      NASA established the Planetary Defense Coordination Office in 2016 to manage the agency’s ongoing efforts in planetary defense.
      To learn more about planetary defense at NASA, visit: 
      https://science.nasa.gov/planetary-defense/
      -end-
      Charles Blue / Karen Fox
      Headquarters, Washington 
      202-802-5345 / 202-358-1600
      charles.e.blue@nasa.gov / karen.fox@nasa.gov
      Share
      Details
      Last Updated Jun 14, 2024 LocationNASA Headquarters Related Terms
      Planetary Defense Coordination Office Planetary Defense Planetary Science Division Science & Research Science Mission Directorate View the full article
    • By NASA
      4 Min Read California Teams Win $1.5 Million in NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge
      By Savannah Bullard
      After two days of live competitions, two teams from southern California are heading home with a combined $1.5 million from NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge. 
      The husband-and-wife duo of Terra Engineering, Valerie and Todd Mendenhall, receive the $1 million prize Wednesday, June 12, for winning the final phase of NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge at Alabama A&M’s Agribition Center in Huntsville, Alabama. With the Terra Engineering team at the awards ceremony are from left Daniel K. Wims, Alabama A&M University president; Joseph Pelfrey, NASA Marshall Space Flight center director; NASA’s Break the Ice Challenge Manager Naveen Vetcha; and Majed El-Dweik, Alabama A&M University’s vice president of research & economic development. NASA/Jonathan Deal Since 2020, competitors from around the world have competed in this challenge with the common goal of inventing robots that can excavate and transport the icy regolith on the Moon. The lunar South Pole is the targeted landing site for crewed Artemis missions, so utilizing all resources in that area, including the ice within the dusty regolith inside the permanently shadowed regions, is vital for the success of a sustained human lunar presence.
      On Earth, the mission architectures developed in this challenge aim to help guide machine design and operation concepts for future mining and excavation operations and equipment for decades.
      “Break the Ice represents a significant milestone in our journey toward sustainable lunar exploration and a future human presence on the Moon,” said Joseph Pelfrey, Center Director of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. “This competition has pushed the boundaries of what is possible by challenging the brightest minds to devise groundbreaking solutions for excavating lunar ice, a crucial resource for future missions. Together, we are forging a future where humanity ventures further into the cosmos than ever before.”
      The final round of the Break the Ice competition featured six finalist teams who succeeded in an earlier phase of the challenge. The competition took place at the Alabama A&M Agribition Center in Huntsville, Alabama, on June 11 and 12, where each team put their diverse solutions to the test in a series of trials, using terrestrial resources like gravity-offloading cranes, concrete slabs, and a rocky track with tricky obstacles to mimic the environment on the Moon.
      Thehusband-and-wife duo of Terra Engineering took home the top prize for their “Irresistible Object” rover. Team lead Todd Mendenhall competed in NASA’s 2007 Regolith Excavation Challenge, facilitated through NASA’s Centennial Challenges, which led him and Valerie Mendenhall to continue the pursuit of solutions for autonomous lunar excavation.
      Starpath Robotics earned the second place prize for its four-wheeled rover that can mine, collect, and haul material during the final phase of NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge at Alabama A&M’s Agribition Center in Huntsville, Alabama. From left are Matt Kruszynski, Saurav Shroff, Matt Khudari, Alan Hsu, David Aden, Mihir Gondhalekarl, Joshua Huang and Aakash Ramachandran.NASA/Jonathan Deal A small space hardware business, Starpath Robotics, earned the second-place prize for its four-wheeled rover that can mine, collect, and haul material. The team, led by Saurav Shroff and lead engineer Mihir Gondhalekar, developed a robotic mining tool that features a drum barrel scraping mechanism for breaking into the tough lunar surface. This allows the robot to mine material quickly and robustly without sacrificing energy.
      “This challenge has been pivotal in advancing the technologies we need to achieve a sustained human presence on the Moon,” said Kim Krome, the Acting Program Manager for NASA’s Centennial Challenges. “Terra Engineering’s rover, especially, bridged several of the technology gaps that we identified – for instance, being robust and resilient enough to traverse rocky landscapes and survive the harsh conditions of the lunar South Pole.”
      Beyond the $1.5 million in prize funds, three teams will be given the chance to use Marshall Space Flight Center’s thermal vacuum (TVAC) chambers to continue testing and developing their robots. These chambers use thermal vacuum technologies to create a simulated lunar environment, allowing scientists and researchers to build, test, and approve hardware for flight-ready use.
      The following teams performed exceptionally well in the excavation portion of the final competition, earning these invitations to the TVAC facilities:
      Terra Engineering (Gardena, California) Starpath Robotics (Hawthorne, California) Michigan Technological University – Planetary Surface Technology Development Lab (Houghton, Michigan) “We’re looking forward to hosting three of our finalists at our thermal vacuum chamber, where they will get full access to continue testing and developing their technologies in our state-of-the-art facilities,” said Break the Ice Challenge Manager Naveen Vetcha, who supports NASA’s Centennial Challenges through Jacobs Space Exploration Group. “Hopefully, these tests will allow the teams to take their solutions to the next level and open the door for opportunities for years to come.”
      NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge is a NASA Centennial Challenge led by the agency’s Marshall Space Flight Center, with support from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in  Florida. Centennial Challenges are part of the Prizes, Challenges, and Crowdsourcing program under NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate. Ensemble Consultancy supports challenge competitors. Alabama A&M University, in coordination with NASA, supports the final competitions and winner event for the challenge.
      For more information on Break the Ice, visit:
      nasa.gov/breaktheice
      Jonathan Deal
      Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala. 
      256.544.0034  
      jonathan.e.deal@nasa.gov 
      Share
      Details
      Last Updated Jun 13, 2024 LocationMarshall Space Flight Center Related Terms
      General Centennial Challenges Centennial Challenges News Marshall Space Flight Center Prizes, Challenges, and Crowdsourcing Program Explore More
      4 min read Six Finalists Named in NASA’s $3.5 Million Break the Ice Challenge
      Article 6 months ago 4 min read NASA Awards $500,000 in Break the Ice Lunar Challenge
      Article 3 years ago 3 min read Break the Ice Lunar Challenge Phase 2
      Article 2 years ago Keep Exploring Discover More Topics From NASA
      Missions
      Humans in Space
      Climate Change
      Solar System
      View the full article
    • By NASA
      3 min read
      Preparations for Next Moonwalk Simulations Underway (and Underwater)
      NASA’s Break the Ice Lunar Challenge will conclude with a final competition, open to the public and media, this June in Huntsville, Alabama.NASA NASA will announce the winners of the final phase of its Break the Ice Lunar Challenge on Wednesday, June 12 at Alabama A&M University’s (AAMU) Agribition Center in Huntsville, Alabama. The challenge aims to develop new technologies that could support a sustained human presence on the Moon by the end of the decade.
      Media and the public are invited to watch the six finalists test their robots in live competitions. Opening remarks from NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center leadership in Huntsville will begin at 8 a.m. CDT on Tuesday, June 11. Teams will compete from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day during the two-day event, with the winner announcement at 5 p.m. in a ceremony on June 12 at the Agribition Center.
      Media interested in covering the event should confirm their attendance with Jonathan Deal by 3 p.m. Monday, June 10, at jonathan.e.deal@nasa.gov.
      Each team will focus on mastering two components during the two-day event: excavation and transportation. Six identically sized concrete slabs, measuring about 300 cubic feet, will be placed inside the arena for the finalists’ robots to dig. The slabs will have qualities like the icy regolith found in permanently shadowed craters at the Moon’s South Pole. A gravity-offloading crane system will apply the counterweights on the excavating robots to simulate the one-sixth gravity experienced on the Moon.
      Each team will have one hour to dig as much material as possible or until they reach the payload capacity of their excavation robot. Up to three top-performing teams can test their solution inside one of NASA Marshall’s thermal vacuum chambers, which can simulate the temperature and vacuum conditions at the lunar South Pole.
      Outside the Agribition Center, challenge teams will take turns on a custom-built track outfitted with slopes, boulders, pebbles, rocks, and gravel to simulate the lunar surface. This volatile surface will stretch approximately 300 meters and include several twists and turns for more intermediate handling. Each team will get one hour on the track to deliver a payload and return to the starting point. Times, distances, and pitfalls will be recorded independently.
      After this event, the first-place winner will receive $1 million, and the second-place winner will receive $500,000.
      The awards ceremony will be livestreamed on Marshall YouTube and NASA Prize Facebook.
      Since 2020, competitors have worked to design, build, and test icy regolith excavation and transportation technologies for near-term lunar missions that address key operational elements and environmental constraints. The six finalists who succeeded in Phase 2: Level 2 of the challenge were announced in December 2023.
      On Earth, the mission architectures developed in this challenge aim to help guide machine design and operation concepts for future mining and excavation operations and equipment for decades.
      Located a few miles east of the AAMU campus, the Agribition (“agriculture” plus “exhibition”) Center is managed by the Alabama Cooperative Extension System with support from AAMU and its College of Agricultural, Life, and Natural Sciences.
      The Break the Ice Lunar Challenge is a NASA Centennial Challenge led by the agency’s Marshall Space Flight Center, supported by NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Centennial Challenges are part of the Prizes, Challenges, and Crowdsourcing program led by NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate and managed at NASA Marshall. Ensemble Consultancy supports the management of competitors for this challenge.
      Learn more about Break the Ice.
      Jonathan Deal
      Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala. 
      256-544-0034  
      jonathan.e.deal@nasa.gov 
      Facebook logo @nasaprize @NASAPrize Instagram logo @nasaprize Share
      Details
      Last Updated Jun 07, 2024 LocationMarshall Space Flight Center Related Terms
      Centennial Challenges Marshall Space Flight Center Explore More
      1 min read SERVIR Co-hosts Regional Workshop on Inclusive Climate Action
      Article 11 mins ago 1 min read SPoRT Undertakes New Collaboration with the United Nations (U.N.) Satellite Centre
      Article 27 mins ago 6 min read NASA, Global Astronomers Await Rare Nova Explosion
      Article 23 hours ago Keep Exploring Discover Related Topics
      Centennial Challenges
      Break the Ice Challenge
      NASA Prizes, Challenges, and Crowdsourcing
      Get Involved
      View the full article
    • By NASA
      The First Responder UAS Wireless Data Gatherer Challenge (UAS 6.0) seeks innovators with applicable expertise across and beyond the UAS ecosystem. For public safety and the greater good, contribute invaluable knowledge and ingenuity in artificial intelligence (AI), radio communications and mapping, Internet of Things (IoT), cybersecurity, and more. Challenge results will support the public safety community and its partners to improve real-time situational awareness and save lives while operating in potentially dangerous radio-complex outdoor environments without fixed communications infrastructure or  satellite communications. You can make a difference!
      Government Agency: National Institute of Standards and Technology
      Open Date: May 2024
      Close Date: July 2024
      For more information, visit: https://firstresponderuas.org/
      View the full article
  • Check out these Videos

×
×
  • Create New...