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(SeattlePI)   Bill Nye wants to scare you with Friday's asteroid flyby. How he is able to pilot an asteroid is anyone's guess   (blog.seattlepi.com) divider line 60
    More: Interesting, Planetary Society, weather satellites, asteroids, day job, Bill Nye, the Science Guy, Tunguska event  
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2456 clicks; posted to Geek » on 14 Feb 2013 at 8:55 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-02-14 09:00:21 AM  
Negative, Ghostrider, the pattern is full.
 
2013-02-14 09:06:43 AM  
Done in one.
 
2013-02-14 09:09:36 AM  
OMG! Global warming! It's going to kill us all!!!!
 
2013-02-14 09:29:27 AM  

cashman: OMG! Global warming! It's going to kill us all!!!!


To be fair, a direct hit by an asteroid would take care of that problem.
 
2013-02-14 09:31:21 AM  
So, is there any chance above zero that this won't fark something up?
 
2013-02-14 09:45:55 AM  
So basically, the opinion writer is let's not worry about asteroids, because Bill Nye is just after your money.

We should be worried that one of the asteroids will hit us.  Eventually one of them will.

What determines if the human race goes extinct is whether or not we can get off this rock and start colonizing the solar system.

//Except Europa of course.
 
2013-02-14 09:52:22 AM  
What the? Didn't we cover this yesterday? Yep, same story about the asteroid (though different source) and again, if you run a sim at Impact Earth it's a lot of nothing. Are we short on science stories today?
 
2013-02-14 09:54:24 AM  
Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.
 
2013-02-14 09:58:57 AM  
Maybe he caused the asteroid to begin with!
 
2013-02-14 10:03:40 AM  
Do we have all the weyrs on standby?
 
2013-02-14 10:12:13 AM  
I guess it would be interesting to know where it would have hit if it had been 15 minutes earlier or whatever.
 
2013-02-14 10:13:44 AM  

MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.


1. He's an engineer.
2. The labcoat is blue.

/still going to see him speak in March
 
2013-02-14 10:17:48 AM  

meat0918: So basically, the opinion writer is let's not worry about asteroids, because Bill Nye is just after your money.


Research doesn't grow on trees.

Unless you're a botanist, of course.
 
2013-02-14 10:24:02 AM  

MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.


I demand to see his degree in Science Guying. My father spent 6 years in school to get his SG, It irks me that some tv personality can just claim to be a 'science guy'.

If we let these entertainers cheapen our beloved Science Guy-ific institutions, how will our children want to grow up to be the next generation of Science Guys and Gals?
 
2013-02-14 10:24:08 AM  
Will he reveal if the asteroid is causing global warming?

Bill Nye: The Pseudo-science Guy!
 
2013-02-14 10:27:50 AM  

PirateKing: MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.

I demand to see his degree in Science Guying. My father spent 6 years in school to get his SG, It irks me that some tv personality can just claim to be a 'science guy'.

If we let these entertainers cheapen our beloved Science Guy-ific institutions, how will our children want to grow up to be the next generation of Science Guys and Gals?


Hey, at least he didn't claim to rule the world like that hack, Beakman.
 
2013-02-14 10:29:28 AM  

MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.


Don't be absurd.  Only whore outfits make a woman a whore, therefore it follows that lab coats make someone a science person.  It's only logical.
 
2013-02-14 10:32:00 AM  
He will use science to navigate the asteroid and finally vanquish Paul Zaloom thus securing his primacy over Science Guying.
 
2013-02-14 10:33:23 AM  
Bill Nye is one of the biggest attention whores of the century. Everyone knows this by now. It's been obvious for years he's not in this for the love of knowledge and the pursuit of truth.
 
2013-02-14 10:36:21 AM  

FirstNationalBastard: PirateKing: MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.

I demand to see his degree in Science Guying. My father spent 6 years in school to get his SG, It irks me that some tv personality can just claim to be a 'science guy'.

If we let these entertainers cheapen our beloved Science Guy-ific institutions, how will our children want to grow up to be the next generation of Science Guys and Gals?

Hey, at least he didn't claim to rule the world like that hack, Beakman.


To be fair, Bill Nye didn't have a hot assistant and a giant talking rat. He just had legions of child slaves.
 
2013-02-14 10:36:54 AM  

indarwinsshadow: What the? Didn't we cover this yesterday? Yep, same story about the asteroid (though different source) and again, if you run a sim at Impact Earth it's a lot of nothing. Are we short on science stories today?


I think the point is that while THIS asteroid isn't dangerous, there are asteroids out there that ARE dangerous and that WILL hit us, that we just don't know about yet. Considering the potential magnitude of the destruction a large asteroid would cause, we invest almost no money in trying to find them. Nye is arguing that we should, as a planet, dedicate more resources to this threat.
 
2013-02-14 10:37:43 AM  
Lab coats are only worn by Orothodox Science Guys.

Those of us in the Reformed school wear street clothes.
 
2013-02-14 10:49:26 AM  

meat0918: So basically, the opinion writer is let's not worry about asteroids, because Bill Nye is just after your money.

We should be worried that one of the asteroids will hit us.  Eventually one of them will.

What determines if the human race goes extinct is whether or not we can get off this rock and start colonizing the solar system.

//Except Europa of course.


Actually, that's why we're looking out for them.  If we do detect an asteroid far enough in advance we have several possible methods of moving it out of the way.  As the BasAstronomer said "The difference between us and the dinosaurs is we have a space program." We do have the technology to prevent this type of disaster, we're not going to go all 3CPO and just proclaim "We're doomed" and do nothing about it.
 
2013-02-14 10:50:26 AM  
And by BasAstronomer I mean BadAstronomer, clearly I need more caffeine
 
2013-02-14 11:00:51 AM  

MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.


Yeah, but he wears a bow tie too.  White lab coat + bow tie = sciencey shiat.
 
2013-02-14 11:02:49 AM  
This needs peer review. What does beakman have to say on the topic?
 
2013-02-14 11:13:18 AM  

jack21221: indarwinsshadow: What the? Didn't we cover this yesterday? Yep, same story about the asteroid (though different source) and again, if you run a sim at Impact Earth it's a lot of nothing. Are we short on science stories today?

I think the point is that while THIS asteroid isn't dangerous, there are asteroids out there that ARE dangerous and that WILL hit us, that we just don't know about yet. Considering the potential magnitude of the destruction a large asteroid would cause, we invest almost no money in trying to find them. Nye is arguing that we should, as a planet, dedicate more resources to this threat.


Really?


Why?

It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it. For arguments sake let's say an asteroid the approximate size of the one that wiped out the dinos 65+ mya was headed at us one year from now. There's no technology available to deal with it (and probably nothing available for at least century). We're screwed. The only thing we'd know is for certain the asteroid would hit us...and wipe us out as well. It's not helpfull. Instead of detection, which we're quite capable of now with our limited technology and funds, we should be looking at dealing with the objects.
 
2013-02-14 11:31:27 AM  
indarwinsshadow:
Why?

It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it. For arguments sake let's say an asteroid the approximate size of the one that wiped out the dinos 65+ mya was headed at us one year from now. There's no technology available to deal with it (and probably nothing available for at least century). We're screwed. The only thing we'd know is for certain the asteroid would hit us...and wipe us out as well. It's not helpfull. Instead of detection, which we're quite capable of now with our limited technology and funds, we should be looking at dealing with the objects.


Huh? Wouldn't something a year out will be easy to deal with? Get out there, strap an ion rocket on it and start pushing.
 
2013-02-14 11:56:41 AM  
Humanity really does need to be striving to get off this rock cause one way or another something will happen to the Earth.  When that day comes we need to be ready for it or we will go the way of the dinosaurs.
 
2013-02-14 12:02:09 PM  

indarwinsshadow: It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it. For arguments sake let's say an asteroid the approximate size of the one that wiped out the dinos 65+ mya was headed at us one year from now. There's no technology available to deal with it (and probably nothing available for at least century). We're screwed. The only thing we'd know is for certain the asteroid would hit us...and wipe us out as well. It's not helpfull. Instead of detection, which we're quite capable of now with our limited technology and funds, we should be looking at dealing with the objects


*long first draft deleted*

Boy, I'm glad I actually re-read your post more carefully before I posted a screed that would have made me look like an idiot.

I agree that technology to deflect them is essential, however earlier detection makes dealing with them easier.  A nudge when it's ten year's away will have a greater effect on the asteroid's orbit than a sold whack when it's right on top of us.
 
2013-02-14 12:18:32 PM  
As the BasAstronomer said "The difference between us and the dinosaurs is we have a space program."

cache.gawkerassets.com
LOL WUT
 
2013-02-14 12:33:51 PM  

PirateKing: FirstNationalBastard: PirateKing: MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.

I demand to see his degree in Science Guying. My father spent 6 years in school to get his SG, It irks me that some tv personality can just claim to be a 'science guy'.

If we let these entertainers cheapen our beloved Science Guy-ific institutions, how will our children want to grow up to be the next generation of Science Guys and Gals?

Hey, at least he didn't claim to rule the world like that hack, Beakman.

To be fair, Bill Nye didn't have a hot assistant and a giant talking rat. He just had legions of child slaves.


Mr. Wizard laughs at them both from beyond the grave
 
2013-02-14 12:33:58 PM  

IC Stars: indarwinsshadow:
Why?

It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it. For arguments sake let's say an asteroid the approximate size of the one that wiped out the dinos 65+ mya was headed at us one year from now. There's no technology available to deal with it (and probably nothing available for at least century). We're screwed. The only thing we'd know is for certain the asteroid would hit us...and wipe us out as well. It's not helpfull. Instead of detection, which we're quite capable of now with our limited technology and funds, we should be looking at dealing with the objects.

Huh? Wouldn't something a year out will be easy to deal with? Get out there, strap an ion rocket on it and start pushing.


You and Bondith, are under the impression that present technology exists to deal with the problem . We don't have anything capable of moving something of this mass. It just doesn't exist.  I'm not saying we shouldn't be working on the problem, just the opposite. Instead of pouring money into (early) detection, we should be spending money on working on a solution to do something about it. Our best rockets are chemical based. Outside of rockets we have squat. Kind of scary. We'd know early...the only thing it would give us is a hell of a view of the end.
 
2013-02-14 12:44:29 PM  
Bill Bye has a bachelor's of science and has worked professionally as an engineer. He's more qualified to talk STEM subjects than most Farkers.
 
2013-02-14 12:49:03 PM  

indarwinsshadow: You and Bondith, are under the impression that present technology exists to deal with the problem . We don't have anything capable of moving something of this mass. It just doesn't exist. I'm not saying we shouldn't be working on the problem, just the opposite. Instead of pouring money into (early) detection, we should be spending money on working on a solution to do something about it. Our best rockets are chemical based. Outside of rockets we have squat. Kind of scary. We'd know early...the only thing it would give us is a hell of a view of the end.


Agreed, actually.  With the shuttle fleet in mothballs and private spaceflight in its infancy, we have nothing capable of carrying humans below low Earth orbit.  Something as complicated as altering the orbit of a body weighing millions (if not more) of tonnes isn't something you can trust to automated probes.  Plus, while we have an ion engine capable of powering a probe, scaling it up by orders upon orders of magnitude isn't trivial, so someone should get on that.

As for the detection thing, I'd think three or four satellites in solar orbit at 1 AU should give us a decent parallax baseline and not be too tricky to launch and set up (thereby improving our detection capabilities without diverting too many resources from deflection research).  Anyone have thoughts on that?
 
2013-02-14 12:49:36 PM  

indarwinsshadow: It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it.


This is factually incorrect. There are many ways to deal with an asteroid discovered a year out. There's NOT anything we can do about an asteroid discovered a couple of weeks or days out. That's the whole farking POINT of detecting them early.
 
2013-02-14 12:55:02 PM  

indarwinsshadow: IC Stars: indarwinsshadow:
Why?

It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it. For arguments sake let's say an asteroid the approximate size of the one that wiped out the dinos 65+ mya was headed at us one year from now. There's no technology available to deal with it (and probably nothing available for at least century). We're screwed. The only thing we'd know is for certain the asteroid would hit us...and wipe us out as well. It's not helpfull. Instead of detection, which we're quite capable of now with our limited technology and funds, we should be looking at dealing with the objects.

Huh? Wouldn't something a year out will be easy to deal with? Get out there, strap an ion rocket on it and start pushing.

You and Bondith, are under the impression that present technology exists to deal with the problem . We don't have anything capable of moving something of this mass. It just doesn't exist.  I'm not saying we shouldn't be working on the problem, just the opposite. Instead of pouring money into (early) detection, we should be spending money on working on a solution to do something about it. Our best rockets are chemical based. Outside of rockets we have squat. Kind of scary. We'd know early...the only thing it would give us is a hell of a view of the end.


So we've got one argument for increased funding for the detection of these objects, and one argument for developing the technology to deal with them.

I think we really need to be doing both.  If we're doomed and there's nothing we can do, I probably would rather not know.  However, if we have the technology to deflect/destroy it, wouldn't we need to see it coming first?
 
2013-02-14 12:58:44 PM  

IntertubeUser: Bill Bye has a bachelor's of science and has worked professionally as an engineer. He's more qualified to talk STEM subjects than most Farkers.


He's a mechanical engineer. I'm willing to concede to him in a discussion of mechanical engineering. Every other subject, he can wait in line with the other Farkers.
 
2013-02-14 01:13:21 PM  

browser_snake: IntertubeUser: Bill Bye has a bachelor's of science and has worked professionally as an engineer. He's more qualified to talk STEM subjects than most Farkers.

He's a mechanical engineer. I'm willing to concede to him in a discussion of mechanical engineering. Every other subject, he can wait in line with the other Farkers.


To get a degree in engineering, he would've had to have taken a butt load of math and physics...things you probably wouldn't understand.
 
2013-02-14 01:16:28 PM  

IntertubeUser: Bill Bye has a bachelor's of science


Whoa.  He truly deserves the title of "The Science Guy" with a resume like that.  From now on call me "The Economics Guy" or "The English Guy".
 
2013-02-14 01:19:13 PM  

jack21221: indarwinsshadow: It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it.

This is factually incorrect. There are many ways to deal with an asteroid discovered a year out. There's NOT anything we can do about an asteroid discovered a couple of weeks or days out. That's the whole farking POINT of detecting them early.


Well? Produce the fact then? What have we got in the arsenal that could deal with something that big? A quick glance on the subject from wiki states the object was  "the impacting bolide that formed the crater was at least 10 km (6 mi) in diameter. "
Show me something that's even remotely capable of dealing with something of this mass going 40,000 mph?
 
2013-02-14 01:22:14 PM  

Sleazy_as_Pie: indarwinsshadow: IC Stars: indarwinsshadow:
Why?

It's not like we're technically capable of doing anything about it. For arguments sake let's say an asteroid the approximate size of the one that wiped out the dinos 65+ mya was headed at us one year from now. There's no technology available to deal with it (and probably nothing available for at least century). We're screwed. The only thing we'd know is for certain the asteroid would hit us...and wipe us out as well. It's not helpfull. Instead of detection, which we're quite capable of now with our limited technology and funds, we should be looking at dealing with the objects.

Huh? Wouldn't something a year out will be easy to deal with? Get out there, strap an ion rocket on it and start pushing.

You and Bondith, are under the impression that present technology exists to deal with the problem . We don't have anything capable of moving something of this mass. It just doesn't exist.  I'm not saying we shouldn't be working on the problem, just the opposite. Instead of pouring money into (early) detection, we should be spending money on working on a solution to do something about it. Our best rockets are chemical based. Outside of rockets we have squat. Kind of scary. We'd know early...the only thing it would give us is a hell of a view of the end.

So we've got one argument for increased funding for the detection of these objects, and one argument for developing the technology to deal with them.

I think we really need to be doing both.  If we're doomed and there's nothing we can do, I probably would rather not know.  However, if we have the technology to deflect/destroy it, wouldn't we need to see it coming first?


I wouldn't want to know either. It'd be quick so I can't imagine having time to be scared or fear for my family. Knowing would only destroy society in a short period of time. I'd rather go to my doom not knowing because there's nothing that could be done. So why worry? It's a waste of time .
 
2013-02-14 01:26:49 PM  
I preferred Carl Sagan.
 
2013-02-14 01:28:01 PM  
Last little tidbit so we can stop worring. Reading through the article on wiki, it appears the asteroid that slammed into earth 65+ mya wasn't one asteroid....there might have been several impacts. Like the shoemaker levy 9 impact back in the 90's. A comet fractured and pieces rained down into Jupiters atmosphere.
 
2013-02-14 01:29:59 PM  

ExpressPork: IntertubeUser: Bill Bye has a bachelor's of science

Whoa.  He truly deserves the title of "The Science Guy" with a resume like that.  From now on call me "The Economics Guy" or "The English Guy".


I'll call you what ever you want as long as you don't screw up my venti caramel machiato.
 
2013-02-14 02:27:58 PM  

indarwinsshadow: Well? Produce the fact then? What have we got in the arsenal that could deal with something that big? A quick glance on the subject from wiki states the object was  "the impacting bolide that formed the crater was at least 10 km (6 mi) in diameter. "
Show me something that's even remotely capable of dealing with something of this mass going 40,000 mph?


First of all, something that size isn't going to sneak up on us a year in advance. Something that size would be seen many years in advance. We've surveyed the sky well enough to know that there is nothing that size out there threatening us. Given many years, it would be easy to move something that size. You don't need to alter the orbit by much to cause it to miss Earth.

You've moved the goalposts from what Nye is talking about. Nye talked about the impact which formed Meteor Crater in Arizona.That impactor was about 50 meters in diameter. The threat comes from these smaller asteroids, in the 0.1 to 1km diamater range. Those are the ones that can sneak up on us. Given a year or two advance notice on that, we can use kinetic impacts to nudge it off course.  We've already done this! The Deep Impact mission successfully smacked a block of copper into a cometary nucleus. The technology is already there.
 
2013-02-14 02:58:16 PM  

jack21221: indarwinsshadow: Well? Produce the fact then? What have we got in the arsenal that could deal with something that big? A quick glance on the subject from wiki states the object was  "the impacting bolide that formed the crater was at least 10 km (6 mi) in diameter. "
Show me something that's even remotely capable of dealing with something of this mass going 40,000 mph?

First of all, something that size isn't going to sneak up on us a year in advance. Something that size would be seen many years in advance. We've surveyed the sky well enough to know that there is nothing that size out there threatening us. Given many years, it would be easy to move something that size. You don't need to alter the orbit by much to cause it to miss Earth.

You've moved the goalposts from what Nye is talking about. Nye talked about the impact which formed Meteor Crater in Arizona.That impactor was about 50 meters in diameter. The threat comes from these smaller asteroids, in the 0.1 to 1km diamater range. Those are the ones that can sneak up on us. Given a year or two advance notice on that, we can use kinetic impacts to nudge it off course.  We've already done this! The Deep Impact mission successfully smacked a block of copper into a cometary nucleus. The technology is already there.


No we haven't. You're talking about science fiction. Smacking (lol) a block of copper into a cometary nucleus has sh*t all to do with moving at 160,000 km if it's made of solid nickel. WTF? Stop babbling this bullshiat already and produce some facts. Pulling facts out of your ass and stating them as facts doesn't prove squat.
 
2013-02-14 03:36:24 PM  

MilesTeg: Just because a guy puts on a white coat it does not make him a "science" guy.


Yeah, this. Dude is an actor, not a really a 'scientist'.
 
2013-02-14 03:36:38 PM  
"This asteroid is about the same size as the one that made the crater in Meteor Crater Arizona..."

Meteor Crater is SO totally cool... If you haven't been, I highly recommend it. a 1-mile across crater from something the size of a bus. the best part? The thing is privately owned, but the family runs it as well as a state or national park. I lived in Northern Arizona for years before I finally made the short trip to see it. It's really worth swinging East from Flag if anyone's up that way. You can also check out Petrified Forest to help justify the extra few hours.
 
2013-02-14 04:25:44 PM  
indarwinsshadow:  No we haven't. You're talking about science fiction. Smacking (lol) a block of copper into a cometary nucleus has sh*t all to do with moving at 160,000 km if it's made of solid nickel. WTF? Stop babbling this bullshiat already and produce some facts. Pulling facts out of your ass and stating them as facts doesn't prove squat.

I'm not going to do the math for you. From your writing style, it's clear that you're probably in high school or just recently graduated. When I was your age, I thought I knew everything too. You'll grow out of it.

Anyway, I was talking about the technology to impact an orbiting body with a spacecraft. We've already done that. We have that technology. It would just be a matter of scaling it to increase the momentum. The earth is a very small target. It wouldn't take much to nudge an asteroid off course if it's done a year out.

In fact, here's an article about this sort of thing:  http://www.space.com/13524-deflecting-killer-asteroids-earth-impact-m e thods.html

Here's a feasibility study about deflecting asteroid 2011 AG5 with a kinetic impactor:  http://www.space-explorers.org/committees/NEO/2012/AG5_Deimos_analysi s _13Feb12.pdf They conclude that there are "several feasible mission opportunities" to do so.

The experts seem to agree with me and disagree with you. You're so cavalier about demanding "facts," perhaps you should bring some of your own.
 
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