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Near-Earth Asteroid Discovered Via Crowdsourcing

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the secret-escape-plans-ruined dept.

Space 21

astroengine writes "The ESA's Space Situational Awareness (SSA) program has scored its first hit. Although SSA astronomers have detected asteroids before, this is the first time that a near-Earth object (NEO) has been spotted by the group of volunteers who analyze automated data from the 1-meter ESA Optical Ground Station telescope on Tenerife. Although details are scant, asteroid 2011 SF108's orbit takes it to a closest approach of 30 million kilometers (19 million miles, or roughly 100 times the average Earth-moon distance) from Earth — a distance considered 'safe.'"

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21 comments

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that's (1)

rish87 (2460742) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696256)

no moon!

Re:that's (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696490)

no moon!

"I'm your moon, your my moon, we go round and round in circles"

Re:that's (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37701696)

Your mom!

Re:that's (1)

jamiesan (715069) | more than 2 years ago | (#37700522)

what she said.

They way it went down (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37696314)

Poster one, "Hey I found NEO a 1,000 miles out"

Poster two, "That's odd. I just found one 900 miles out"

Poster three, "That's cool, the one I just spotted is 800 miles but I can't tell what direction it's headed in?'

Poster four, "You're all wrong it's 500 miles out and stationary. I'd guess it's 50 miles across. Wait I looked again, it's still fixed in the sky but I was wrong it's 75 miles across, er maybe a 100"

Poster five, "I've got you all beat we're having an unscheduled eclipse!"

Poster six, "That's nothing. There's two moons in the sky only one is really, really big. I wonder............."

Re:They way it went down (4, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696416)

Poster one, "Hey I found NEO a 1,000 miles out"........

I wonder if they had moderation?

Poster one, "Hey I found NEO a 1,000 miles out" +1 Interesting

Poster two, "That's odd. I just found one 900 miles out" +1 Interesting

Poster three, "That's cool, the one I just spotted is 800 miles but I can't tell what direction it's headed in?' +1 Interesting

Poster four, "You're all wrong it's 500 miles out and stationary. I'd guess it's 50 miles across. Wait I looked again, it's still fixed in the sky but I was wrong it's 75 miles across, er maybe a 100" +1 Funny

Poster five, "I've got you all beat we're having an unscheduled eclipse!" -1 Troll

Poster six, "That's nothing. There's two moons in the sky only one is really, really big. I wonder............." -1 Overrated

Re:They way it went down (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696518)

Poster one, "Hey I found NEO a 1,000 miles out" +1 Interesting

"Hey I found NEO a 1,000 miles out" +1 Informative

Parent: +1 Insightful.

Old School Crowdsourcing (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696386)

Up in the sky .. it's a bird!

It's a plane!

It's Superman!

old school joke (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696596)

Up in the sky .. it's a bird!

It's a plane!

It's Superman!

*farting noise*........*splat*

(wiping face) Ewwwww ......no, it was a bird!

Re:Old School Crowdsourcing (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696768)

I thought the third line was: "It's a frog!"

Probably dating myself...

Re:Old School Crowdsourcing (1)

jorgevillalobos (1044924) | more than 2 years ago | (#37698206)

Probably dating myself...

I think your ID does that job fairly well ;)

What crowd? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37696396)

In this case, 20 volunteers were on-hand, via the Internet, to review the asteroid candidates.

20 volunteers do not make a crowd.

Re:What crowd? (1)

xstonedogx (814876) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696450)

You're right. Three is a crowd. This was six and two-thirds crowds. When will people learn.

Re:What crowd? (1)

taoareyou (2468090) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696550)

You're right. Three is a crowd.

Three's Company.

Automate (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696502)

Wouldn't this be something that lends itself to automation more easily than crowd sourcing? Just asking...

Re:Automate (2)

astroengine (1577233) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696586)

It is automated, but only to a point. FTA: "...the telescope scans the sky automatically, looking for any errant chunks of space rock. When an asteroid candidate is identified, the data must be reviewed by a human before the discovery is made."

Re:Automate (1)

crotherm (160925) | more than 2 years ago | (#37697970)

The idea is that different humans will look at a data sets differently is what this is about. To automate that is nigh impossible.

Re:Automate (1)

Dr La (1342733) | more than 2 years ago | (#37698968)

Wouldn't this be something that lends itself to automation more easily than crowd sourcing? Just asking...

Actually, the human eye is still beter at detecting trails on plates than automated systems are, especially where fainter trails are concerned. Automated system also have serious difficulty discerning between real NEA trails and trails from cosmic ray impacts on the sensor.

Spacewatch used automated detection, nevertheless human inspectors discivered 43 additional asteroid trails on the images between 2004 and 2006: trails that the automated routines missed.

NEO, you're the one... (1)

technix4beos (471838) | more than 2 years ago | (#37696580)

What, no Matrix jokes yet?

Not a first: Spacewatch did this earlier (3, Informative)

Dr La (1342733) | more than 2 years ago | (#37698956)

Interesting as it is, this is not a "first". The Spacewatch program "crowdsourced" the search for NEA by using volunteer plate inspectors between 2004 and 2006 (the Spacewatch FMO project) and discovered 43 new NEA this way (http://fmo.lpl.arizona.edu/discoveries.cfm). I personally discovered 2005 GG81, a small Amor asteroid, as a volunteer plate reviewer in this project.

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37712740)

I hope the crowd source location is more effective than the crowd sourced evacuation plans in the movies. (Jam the highways and train stations as the monster (asteroid) approaches.

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