1st IAA Planetary Defense Conference: Protecting Earth from Asteroids
29 June 2008 The Planetary Defence Conference, with a strong focus on student participation, will be held for the first time in Europe the week of April 27, 2009 in Granada, Spain.
Objectives of the conference
The 2009 meeting will bring together worldwide experts to discuss:
A particular focus will be Apophis, a 300-meter asteroid that is predicted to pass within 40,000 km of Earth in 2029 and has a current probability of impacting our planet in 2036 of 1 in 45000.
At present, there are about 900 asteroids and comets that are designated Potentially Hazardous Objects (PHOs), objects that could eventually threaten Earth. Ground-based observations are increasing this number by more than 600 per year. Experts believe that there could be as many as 20,000 PHO objects larger than 140 meters.
The most recent significant impact occurred in Siberia, Russia, in 1908 when an object estimated to be between 30 and 50 meters in diameter entered the atmosphere and exploded. The blast leveled and ignited over 2000 square kilometers of forest.
Researchers have discovered evidence that a larger object exploded over Canada 18,900 years ago and that this event caused massive fires in North America that caused a 10-degree drop in the average temperature in the Northern Hemisphere for 1000 years.
Asteroids and comets are among our closest neighbours, they form part of our nearest environment in the Solar System. However we still have a great deal to learn about them. We have now some of the technologies that might be needed to prevent these objects from hitting the Earth, but what would actually be required to be sure a threatening object can be tackled? And will we see it coming? The conference will help answer these questions.
Dates and location
27, 28, 29 and 30 April 2009. Granada, Spain.
Call for papers
For more information: See the conference web page at http://www.congrex.nl/09c04/