Skip to comments.Wanted: Small Asteroid For Use As A Slingshot To Slay A Goliath
Posted on 07/15/2006 4:10:05 PM PDT by blam
Wanted: small asteroid for use as slingshot to slay a Goliath
Ian Sample, science correspondent
Saturday July 15, 2006
The Guardian (UK)
It worked for David as he squared up to Goliath, and now scientists hope a slingshot will help save the planet. Scientists at the French space agency, CNES, have calculated how to capture an asteroid and manoeuvre it into a near-Earth orbit, from where it can be flung into the path of a larger asteroid that threatens to collide with Earth. The plan joins a growing list of strategies put forward to protect our home planet should scientists discover an asteroid is on target to crash into us. Proposals have ranged from lobbing nuclear missiles into the asteroid's path to nudging it out of the way with sunlight and attaching rocketboosters to divert it.
Didier Massonnet and Benoit Meyssignac calculate that a 20-metre to 40-metre wide asteroid could be captured into an Earth orbit by first landing a small space module on it. The scientists believe it could be diverted by knocking material off its surface until it falls into a gentle orbit close to Earth. Writing in the journal Acta Astronautica, the scientists show how the asteroid - termed "our David's stone" - could be kept in a holding position until it needed to be redirected to intercept a much larger "Goliath". Even if the incoming asteroid was 1,000 times heavier than the orbiting asteroid, the two would still collide at a speed of 23km a second, generating 4 million billion Joules of energy, the equivalent of 40 Hiroshima bombs.
(Excerpt) Read more at guardian.co.uk ...
Can we then drop it on the Middle East?
Other uses would be to direct a much larger asteroid into Mars, increasing Mar's mass, allowing it to retain more of an atmosphere, as well as warming the planet from the collision.
God already did at least once, see the link below.
Another of your ideas ...
This description sounds a little lame.
"The scientists believe it could be diverted by knocking material off its surface until it falls into a gentle orbit close to Earth."
My idea was to soft-land a mass driver. The momentum of multiple shots of small masses would slowly change the direction of the asteroid, and even large bodies could be redirected to safer orbits.
It only requires a robot with a small nuclear power source to power it.
It's "The Little Steam-Shovel That Could."
Suppose it's time to rock their world again.
Perhaps. I think the last one caused the Dark Ages.
Better question: Can we drop it on Iran?
And they are still in it! ;)
I was thinking we'd get one big enough to cover the whole area.