Saturday11 September 20046:23pm MDT2004-09-12 UTC 0023 last
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News briefs

Sample returns:  Most news sites got it right that helicopters couldn't recover the Genesis solar wind sample return capsule during descent because it failed to deploy its parachutes last Wednesday morning over Utah, but there were a few headlines such as “Hollywood pilots fail to catch sun” at the Times of India September 9th. Helicopter capture isn't part of the Stardust comet mission plan, with a January 2006 landing in Utah, but its parachute system is vital. An article at Spaceflight Now yesterday reports that, “Also studying the Genesis failure will be engineers with NASA's Stardust mission.” And the Seattle Times has an interview September 9th with principal science investigator Donald Brownlee, who said, “Even if Stardust did crash land like that, I fully expect we would be able to recover some fraction of the science.” The Rocky Mountain News has a report from yesterday from the Lockheed Martin Colorado facility that built Genesis and integrated the parachutes from Pioneer Aerospace of Connecticut (see an AP story September 9th at Long Island Newsday and a Hartford Courant article

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yesterday at RedNova), batteries from Saft in France that “experienced periodic overheating problems throughout the mission, ” and pyrotechnics that were to kick out the parachutes and perform other functions during the landing sequence but which didn't fire.

Bits & pieces:  Astrosite Groningen has posted Don Machholz's C/2004 Q2 (Machholz) comet discovery story. [ ] Noticed at SpaceToday.net is a link to a ComputerWorld September 6th article, “IT to Help Avoid Astronomical Armageddon: Predicting asteroid impacts will require supercomputers and petabytes of data.” It tries to connect the 2004 AS1 story (see Index) and the coming computational needs of projects such as Pan-STARRS (Index) and LSST.

Risk monitoring - panel 1/1 Major News for 11 Sept. 2004 previous
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Risk monitoring 11 Sept.

As of 1830 UTC there was no news to report today about monitoring objects with impact solutions. The Saturday Daily Orbit Update MPEC, however, shows more archive work for 2004 BG121, which had its last solutions removed yesterday. Fifteen observations are reported from the Spacewatch 0.9m telescope from 12-13 February 2004, all coded for “hand measurement of CCD image.”

2151 UTC update:  JPL has posted 2004 RF84, which was announced today in MPEC 2004-R56 as discovered yesterday morning by LINEAR in New Mexico and confirmed last night by KLENOT in the Czech Republic, on both sides of midnight by Rezman Observatory in Slovenia, and this morning by Consell Observatory in Spain and Table Mountain Observatory in southern California. JPL puts this object's diameter at a little under a kilometer.


0023 UTC update:  JPL has posted 2004 RJ84, which was announced in MPEC 2004-R57 today as discovered by LINEAR yesterday morning and confirmed this morning by KLENOT, Cordell-Lorenz Observatory in Tennessee, and Table Mountain Observatory. JPL estimates this object's diameter to be on the order of 638 meters/yards.

Summary Risk Table - sources checked at 2359 UTC, 11 Sep

Object

Assessment

Years

VI
PS
cum
PS
max
T
S
Arc 
days
 2004 RJ9 NEODyS 9/102049-20491-6.16-6.1603.796
JPL 9/102049-20942-6.06-6.0903.796
 2004 RJ84JPL 9/112009-209323-4.48-4.6101.125
 2004 RF84JPL 9/112009-2104166-3.13-3.7801.109
 2004 FU162JPL 8/242006-2104824-5.38-6.3700.031
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.

Note: With tomorrow's news edition, 2004 FU162 will be dropped from the above SRT table and from A/CC's CRT page, which are used only to help report the active pursuit and assessment of objects with impact solutions. There has been no 2004 FU162 risk monitoring news since August 24th, more than two weeks ago. This small object was discovered and lost in March, but wasn't announced until last month. Astronomers were requested to check their own archives for any possibility of prediscovery observation.

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