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February 26, 2011

PS1 telescope establishes near-Earth asteroid discovery record

The Pan-STARRS PS1 telescope on Haleakala, Maui, discovered 19 near-Earth asteroids on the night of January 29, the most asteroids discovered by one telescope on a single night.

"This record number of discoveries shows that PS1 is the world's most powerful telescope for this kind of study," said Nick Kaiser, head of the Pan-STARRS project. "NASA and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory's support of this project illustrate how seriously they are taking the threat from near-Earth asteroids."

There are always asteroids that are discovered to be near-Earth, and yes this shows how powerful this specific telescope is, but asteroids change their paths all of the time, and we can't be certain that anything detrimental will come out of these record findings.

To see more go to: http://www.astronomy.com/News-Observing/News/2011/02/PS1%20telescope%20establishes%20near-Earth%20asteroid%20discovery%20record.aspx

Posted by skritt at February 26, 2011 04:11 PM


This article reminded me of something I learned from the Planetarium show, which was that if two galaxies were to intersect, the possibility of planets/stars colliding is equivalent to someone throwing a handful of sand from somewhere around Virginia and someone else throwing a handful of sand from somewhere around California. In other words, the chances are extremely low. I am curious as to HOW "near" to earth these astroids come.

Posted by: danaslee at March 1, 2011 06:54 PM

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