Objects Approaching Earth
NASA to Provide Web Updates on Objects Approaching Earth
"Most people have a fascination with near-Earth objects," said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office at JPL. "And I have to agree with them. I have studied them for over three decades and I find them to be scientifically fascinating, and a few are potentially hazardous to Earth. The goal of our Web site is to provide the public with the most up-to-date and accurate information on these intriguing objects."
The new Asteroid Watch site is online at http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroidwatch.
"This innovative new Web application gives the public an unprecedented look at what's going on in near-Earth space," said Lindley Johnson, program executive for the Near-Earth Objects Observation program at NASA Headquarters in Washington.
NASA supports surveys that detect and track asteroids and comets passing close to Earth. The Near-Earth Object Observation Program, commonly called "Spaceguard," also plots the orbits of these objects to determine if any could be potentially hazardous to our planet.
Impact events have played an important role in the history and development of life on Earth. Giant impacts have been cited as possible causes for mass extinction events in our planet's history, and could have profound effects on the future of life on Earth.