Friday, July 22, 2011

Comet Elenin (C/2010 X1), Asteroid 2005 YU55, Near-Earth Object Preparation

While looking into any updates available regarding Comet Elenin (C/2010 X1) and Asteroid 2005 YU55, I noticed that there wasn't any mention of them on many sites that really should show them.  First, doesn't show Comet Elening (C/2010 X1) on their chart of objects at all.  See below.

Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2003 YS117
Jul 14
73.9 LD
1.0 km
2007 DD
Jul 23
9.3 LD
31 m
2003 BK47
Jul 26
77.6 LD
1.1 km
2009 AV
Aug 22
49.7 LD
1.1 km
2003 QC10
Sep 18
50 LD
1.2 km
2004 SV55
Sep 19
67.5 LD
1.2 km
2007 TD
Sep 23
3.8 LD
58 m
2002 AG29
Oct 9
77.1 LD
1.0 km
2000 OJ8
Oct 13
49.8 LD
2.5 km
2009 TM8
Oct 17
1.1 LD
8 m
2011 FZ2
Nov 7
75.9 LD
1.6 km
2005 YU55
Nov 8
0.8 LD
175 m
Notes: LD means "Lunar Distance." 1 LD = 384,401 km, the distance between Earth and the Moon. 1 LD also equals 0.00256 AU. MAG is the visual magnitude of the asteroid on the date of closest approach.

Notice, they show 2005 YU55, but don't show Comet Elenin (C/2010 X1).  However, do take notice of the distance that 2005 YU55 will be passing Earth by.  I converted this and if I converted it right, this means that asteroid 2005 YU55 will miss Earth by 191085.6 miles.  Compare that distance to the distance to the Moon from Earth, which is 238857 miles.  If my calculations are correct, there is a chance that this asteroid could hit the Moon or the Earth.  Notice also that the approximate date of pass by asteroid 2005 YU55 will be November 8, 2011.

Regarding the Comet C/2010 X1, better known as Comet Elenin, the arrival date should be the mid-to-end of October.  


What Does Comet Elenin's Arrival Herald?

'Elenin cometh.
A lot of talk about this interplanetary body heading our way. It's charted to pass around the sun and close to the earth this fall. And NASA, aka "Never A Straight Answer", says hardly anything. With all their fancy equipment they couldn't pick it up, but some obscure astronomer from Russia does?
Why don't we see more about these heavenly trajectories.  Are they worried about a mass panic?  Are they worried that people will find out about the other parts of this equation, such as the mass order of body bags by FEMA, or the mass order of MREs by the same?  

Dr Mensur Omerbashich, PhD – Cornell University: Astronomical alignments (Elenin) as the cause of M6+ Earthquakes!
As of Elenin. Last reported projected encounter towards earth is  000.4AU. New Comet Elenin Trajectory – ‘from .24AU to .0004AU’
Comet Elenin is a nice target and everybody is focused on Elenin and perhaps the last reported projected encounter towards earth .0004AU is correct, but the real danger might well come from ASTEROID 2005 YU55 (combined with the debris tail of Comet Elenin) on November 8 to November 9, 2011 at .0022 AU (329 115.6 kilometers / 204.502 miles) from Earth.
But let’s not forget Comet Elenin.
If Elenin indeed smacking us as 000.4 AU and as time goes on it seems to be getting a smaller AU number and a slightest change of 0.25 degrees on its current trajectory will place it on a collision course to our planet. Should it hit earth “WHERE IS ITS PROJECTED IMPACT POINT”
In fact all amateur astronomers together, should start searching for Elenin and at least figure out it’s official size and trajectory path.
We will see if it changes in a couple months from now.
A find regarding the observance and preparedness for these two space objects and their trajectory toward Earth states quite a lot of information in the following document. 
ATACGR - A Call For A Global Response

The following is another document with charts that show an incredible increase in near-earth objects.  Just take a look.

Ostp Letter Neos House (1)

This is also interesting regarding the possible quakes from the near-earth objects.

*****************The White House Emblem
The White House EmblemThe White House Emblem

Understanding Earthquakes and Their Impacts: Part I

Ed. Note: This is the first of a two-part blog focusing on the science and aftermath of earthquakes. Part I focuses on the science of a high-magnitude earthquake and whether one could happen in the United States. Tomorrow, Part II will focus on What We Can Do About It.
Part I:  Could a 9.0 Happen Here?
Four deadly earthquakes in just over a year—Haiti, Chile, New Zealand, and now Japan—have provided sudden reminders of the tectonic forces active beneath our feet. Perhaps more importantly, they serve as reminders that disasters resulting from those earthquakes are not the work of nature alone. Even in the face of such giant forces, societal decisions before and after an earthquake can have a major impact on the amount of damage, lives lost, and other outcomes. So while scientists and engineers share in society’s obligation to help the victims, we have an additional responsibility to learn from these events and share lessons that can be applied to vulnerable communities—not only abroad, but also here in the United States.
To make those wise decisions requires some basic geology. Most people know that the crust of the Earth is broken into about a dozen major sections, or plates, (and a number of smaller ones) that slowly move against one another. And when plates collide, the rock material in the collision zone is strained and eventually either breaks or slips along the boundary, causing an earthquake. Less widely appreciated is that the largest earthquakes occur along plate boundary zones where one plate is driven down beneath another. Most of these “subduction zones” are located around the rim of the Pacific Ocean in what is known as the Ring of Fire, so called because these regions are also particularly prone to volcanic eruptions.
As it turns out, Japan sits on or near the intersection of four of these plates, with the ensuing high risk from earthquakes and volcanoes.  The magnitude-9.0 earthquake that occurred on March 11, 2011, was the largest to have struck Japan since seismic recording began 130 years ago and was the fourth-largest earthquake ever recorded worldwide, releasing approximately 1,000 times the energy of the Haiti earthquake of January 2010. In that light it is remarkable that the damage and loss of life was not far greater than it was—a tribute to Japan’s sizable and science-based investments in strict building codes, public preparedness, and earthquake and tsunami early warning systems. In particular, the current estimates of lives lost just from the shaking of this giant earthquake number in the low hundreds. More on this in Part Two of this blog, which we’ll post tomorrow. But it’s important to remember that even as nations begin the humbling process of rethinking certain assumptions about earthquake potential, nuclear safety, and tsunami protection, we must also use the lessons of what went right to redouble ongoing efforts to build resilient communities.
Is this really a problem that the United States has to worry about? The short answer is yes. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, 39 U.S. states have moderate-to-high earthquake hazard, as well as Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and the Marianas Islands. These states include the ones people think of along the West Coast, but also ones in the Mountain West, the Central United States (where we are this year commemorating the bicentennial of a series of magnitude-7 earthquakes that struck the Mississippi Valley in 1811-12), and the East, where magnitude-7 earthquakes have struck as recently as the 1880s. Over all, annualized earthquake losses in the U.S. are estimated at $5.3 billion.
That figure could be dwarfed, of course, in the event of a magnitude-9 earthquake. And while the exact location, timing, or intensity of earthquakes cannot be predicted, the U.S. West Coast has two subduction zones—the type of plate boundary that is off the coast of Honshu, Japan—capable of magnitude-9 earthquakes. One is offshore of southern Alaska and the other is offshore a length of the Pacific Northwest coast stretching from Vancouver, BC, to Northern California—a region known as “Cascadia.”  Earthquakes in southern Alaska produced major tsunamis in 1946, 1957, 1964, and 1965.  The Cascadia zone last ruptured in 1700 and has an average recurrence interval of 500-600 years. The subduction zone in the eastern Caribbean has generated magnitude-8 earthquakes as recently as 1946. The 30-year probability of a magnitude-7 or greater earthquake in California is 94%, a number that fortunately drops to 4% for magnitude-8 or greater.  Clearly, when it comes to a giant U.S. temblor, it is not a question of “if” but of “when.”
Tomorrow: What We Can Do About It
Tammy Dickinson is a Senior Policy Analyst at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
David Applegate is Senior Science Advisor for Earthquake & Geologic Hazards at the US Geological Survey

Understanding Earthquakes and Their Impacts: Part II

Ed. Note: This is the second of a two-part blog focusing on the science and aftermath of earthquakes.Part I focused on the science of a high-magnitude earthquake and whether one could happen in the United States.
Part II: What We Can Do About It
There is nothing we can do to stop the movement of the Earth’s plates or the associated earthquakes, and the recent earthquake in Japan is a reminder that low-probability, high-impact events can strike anytime. This situation demands that nations, communities, and individual families take steps to develop resilience to hazards generally—a process that requires the collective action of government at all levels as well as nonprofit organizations, the private sector, and individuals.
Resilience—in the form of mitigation preparedness activities and improved public understanding—can help ensure that their impacts on society are greatly reduced. Science and technology can play a critical role in the quest for disaster resilience,and scientists and engineers have much to contribute. But doing so requires effective mechanisms to translate and implement their research-derived knowledge. That is precisely the goal of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP)—an interagency endeavor involving the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and National Science Foundation.
One example of NEHRP’s value is its work translating research into the creation of building codes. Every five years the USGS updates its national seismic hazard maps, which estimate earthquake probabilities for various areas based on past frequency of large earthquakes, seismicity patterns, strain accumulation in the Earth’s crust, and other factors that are the subject of active research. This information forms the basis for FEMA-produced design maps that form the seismic provisions in model building codes adopted in earthquake-prone areas.
Building codes are crucial to mitigating the impact of earthquakes. Consider that rebuilding was the defining challenge in the wake of the devastating magnitude-7 earthquake that struck Haiti in January, while Chile weathered a magnitude-8.8 earthquake the following April with far fewer casualties and less damage, thanks to prudent investments in planning and construction. 
The lessons of that contrast were reinforced at a March 2010 workshop convened by the National Science and Technology Council’s Subcommittee on Disaster Reduction along with the State Department and United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, attended by over 100 leading geoscientists, earthquake engineers, planners, architects, emergency managers, building code officials, and a delegation of Haitian government officials and academics.  Key findings from the workshop included the need to adopt and enforce international building codes, especially for construction of schools, hospitals and critical infrastructure being funded by international donors; develop cost-effective design guidelines for residential structures; and incorporate assessments of earthquake, inland flooding, and landslide hazards in the planning and rebuilding process, so that people are not put straight back into harm’s way. The findings also emphasized the central importance of building local science and engineering capabilities as the best way to sustain a more hazard-resilient approach. These recommendations were finalized in a report that was delivered to the donors participating in a major conference the following week in New York, where pledges were made for more than $8 billion in aid.  These guidelines have been used to shape investment strategies for the UN, USAID, Clinton Foundation, World Bank, and many other donors.
Understanding earthquakes and their effects is of vital importance to the Nation. As the population increases, expanding urban development and construction works encroach upon areas susceptible to earthquakes. With a greater understanding of the causes and effects of earthquakes and how they impact buildings, infrastructure, and society itself, we may be able to reduce damage and loss of life from this destructive phenomenon. Progress will be slow, excruciatingly so at times, but given the extent to which resilience can benefit communities beyond just the earthquake threat, it is progress worth striving toward.
Tammy Dickinson is a Senior Policy Analyst at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
David Applegate is Senior Science Advisor for Earthquake & Geologic Hazards at the US Geological Survey
There is other information out there, but why is it that the media is not covering this?  Good reason.  

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