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I am now in the final week of my July fund-raising campaign for Behind the Black, celebrating its 14th anniversary. Thank you all, from the people who have donated small amounts to those who have given large sums. I cannot truly express how much your support means to me.

 

The support of my readers through the years has given me the freedom and ability to analyze objectively the ongoing renaissance in space, as well as the cultural changes -- for good or ill -- that are happening across America. Four years ago, just before the 2020 election I wrote that Joe Biden's mental health was suspect. Only in the past two weeks has the mainstream media decided to recognize that basic fact.

 

Fourteen years ago I wrote that SLS and Orion were a bad ideas, a waste of money, would be years behind schedule, and better replaced by commercial private enterprise. Even today NASA and Congress refuses to recognize this reality.

 

In 2020 when the world panicked over COVID I wrote that the panic was unnecessary, that the virus was apparently simply a variation of the flu, that masks were not simply pointless but if worn incorrectly were a health threat, that the lockdowns were a disaster and did nothing to stop the spread of COVID. Only in the past year have some of our so-called experts in the health field have begun to recognize these facts.

 

Your help allows me to do this kind of intelligent analysis. I take no advertising or sponsors, so my reporting isn't influenced by donations by established space or drug companies. Instead, I rely entirely on donations and subscriptions from my readers, which gives me the freedom to write what I think, unencumbered by outside influences.

 

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New software detects its first potentially dangerous asteroid

New software designed to detect asteroids, developed for use with the Rubin Observatory presently being built in Chile, has successfully discovered its first potentially hazardous asteroid (PHA) using data from another smaller operational ground-based telescope.

The discovered asteroid is 600 feet long, large enough to pose a real threat should it ever hit the Earth. Fortunately, the data says that though its orbit can take it as close as 140,000 miles there is no impact likely in the foreseeable future.

When the Rubin telescope begins its planned ten year survey of the entire night sky in 2025, this software is expected to almost triple the number of known potentially-hazardous-asteroids, from 2,350 to almost 6,000.

Funded primarily by the U.S. National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy, Rubin’s observations will dramatically increase the discovery rate of PHAs. Rubin will scan the sky unprecedentedly quickly with its 8.4-meter mirror and massive 3,200-megapixel camera, visiting spots on the sky twice per night rather than the four times needed by present telescopes. But with this novel observing “cadence,” researchers need a new type of discovery algorithm to reliably spot space rocks.

Thus, the development of this new software.

Genesis cover

On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.

 

The print edition can be purchased at Amazon. Or you can buy it directly from the author and get an autographed copy.

 
The ebook is available everywhere for $5.99 (before discount) at amazon, or direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit. If you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and the author gets a bigger cut much sooner.


The audiobook is also available at all these vendors, and is also free with a 30-day trial membership to Audible.
 

"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs."--San Antonio Express-News

3 comments

  • David Eastman

    So, an asteroid that’s around 600 feet on the long axis, perihelion right at 1au, aphelion most of the way to Jupiter, and inclined maybe 15 degrees off the ecliptic, if I’m reading those data correctly. Seems like a good place to park a bunch of scientific instruments…

  • Jeff Wright

    Or a base.

  • David K

    Little small for an O’Neill cylinder but you could certainly do some science or mining on it.

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