Wednesday, 20 January 2016

New NASA programme to protect Earth from asteroids, comets

NASA has started a new programme for detecting and tracking near-Earth objects (NEOs) — comets and asteroids that pass by the Earth’s orbit — to ward off any potential impact threats to our planet.

More than 13,500 near-Earth objects of all sizes have been discovered to date — over 95 per cent of them since NASA-funded surveys began in 1998. About 1,500 NEOs are now detected each year.

The Planetary Defence Coordination Office will take a leading role in coordinating inter-agency and intergovernmental efforts in response to any potential impact threats.

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