Thursday13 May 20043:50am MDT 14 May2004-05-14 UTC 0950 back top next  

The Asteroid/Comet Connection's
daily news journal about
asteroids, comets, and meteors

Today's issue status: done

Cover: The Bedout impact crater depicted in an "isostatic residual gravity model" from Andrew Lockwood of the Geological Survey of Western Australia (GSWA), with a dashed circle about 100 km. (62 miles) wide and various drill sites. This structure has been dated to 250 million years ago and today was associated with the Permian extinction (the "Great Dying") that wiped out the trilobites, most nautiloids, and many other common life forms. More below.

Bedout crater – panel 1/1 Major News for 13 May 2004 back top next  
Bedout crater

At a NASA and National Science Foundation news presentation at 2pm EDT (1800 UTC) today, Luann Becker and her team announced that the Bedout (beh-doo) structure in the Indian Ocean just off northern Western Australia (see gravity map above) has been found to be an impact crater associated with how "90 percent of marine and 80 percent of land life perished" 250 million years ago at the end of the Permian. See

Geologic map by A. Mory, GSWA

Geologic map by A. Mory, Geological Survey of W. Australia (GSWA)

her Bedout Web site and news coverage for more about this story.

News releases:

News coverage:

Around three to four hours before the 1800 UTC news embargo was lifted, this story broke in Australia with news accounts such as these, dated tomorrow:

News briefs – panel 1/1 Major News for 13 May 2004 back top next  
News briefs

FMOP discovery:  FMO Project online volunteer image reviewer Franco Mallia of Italy discovered a fast moving object (FMO) this morning in images from the Spacewatch 0.9m telescope in Arizona. It is on the Minor Planet Center NEO Confirmation Page (NEOCP) with temporary designation SW40DT, "moving at 3.7 deg/day and recovery prospects are good."

Rosetta observes C/2002 T7:  A Southwest Research Institute news release dated yesterday tells that its "Alice ultraviolet imaging spectrometer . . . aboard the European Space Agency (ESA) Rosetta comet orbiter, successfully passed its space checkout last month . . . approximately 20 million kilometers from Earth . . . leading to textbook 'first light' observations of the interplanetary hydrogen and a nearby, bright comet called C/2002 T7 (LINEAR)."

Bits & pieces:  Astrobiology Magazine's "Waystations to Mars" article today is an edited version of David Morrison's April 16th testimony to the President's Commission on the Moon, Mars and Beyond in which he mentions a proposal "to use one of the three Prometheus missions" to deflect an asteroid's orbit "a tiny bit" to show it can be done. has an article from yesterday, "Hubble Health Report: Telescope's Life Expectancy Predicted."

Quicktime movies of two bright meteors traveling approximately south to north this morning have been posted from the Sandia Lab all-sky camera in Albuquerque, New Mexico, from 2:19am (664Kb) and 4:34am (484Kb, links temporary).

Risk monitoring - panel 1/1 Major News for 13 May 2004 back top next  
Risk monitoring 13 May

For objects with impact solutions, the Thursday Daily Orbit Update MPEC only has observation reported for 2004 JR, with its previous 2.115-day observing arc extended yesterday morning by 0.968 day by Tenagra II Observatory in Arizona. Today NEODyS removed all of its solutions.

NEODyS today posted 2004 JQ1 with a couple hundred impact solutions, which can happen with newly discovered objects with very short observing arcs.

JPL has posted 2004 JO2, which was announced in MPEC 2004-J55 today as having been discovered by Brian Skiff at LONEOS in Arizona early yesterday. It was confirmed this morning by Tenagra II and Sabino Canyon observatories in Arizona, and by Table Mountain Observatory in southern California. JPL has only one impact solution for this object, which it estimates at being just over a kilometer wide (about 0.68 mile).

Summary Risk Table - sources checked at 2159 UTC, 13 May




 2004 JRNEODyS 5/13R E M O V E D
JPL 5/12R E M O V E D
 2004 JQ1 NEODyS 5/132007-2080213-3.25-4.0401.079
JPL 5/132012-209829-4.54-4.9401.079
 2004 JO2JPL 5/132053-20531-5.72-5.7201.055
 2004 HZ NEODyS 5/22023-20454-2.39-2.39011.973
JPL 5/22023-20333-2.44-2.44011.973
 2004 HQ1 NEODyS 5/112079-20791-6.85-6.85019.218
JPL 5/3R E M O V E D
 2004 HMJPL 5/102104-21041-6.38-6.38022.967
 2004 GE2JPL 4/242100-21001-6.02-6.02011.811
VI = count of "virtual impactors" (impact solutions)
See A/CC's Consolidated Risk Tables for more and maybe
  newer details, and check the monitors' links for latest info.
Note that only objects recently in view are shown here.   [ top ]
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