Are you a skilled computer programmer? Have the stories of asteroid flybys and meteor fireballs in recent news (and indeed whenever they pop up) been filling you with a sense of dread? If the answer to both of these questions is yes, you can help, by taking part in the Asteroid Data Hunter challenge.
There are several programs and surveys around the world that search the night skies for asteroids, especially for the ones that may eventually hit Earth. They find these asteroids by a careful comparison of images taken through telescopes, watching for any objects in the pictures to shift their position relative to the stars. There are computer programs that can do this, and they've worked fairly well so far, but recent events have shown that we need to step things up.
"Current asteroid detection initiatives are only tracking one percent of the estimated objects that orbit the Sun. We are excited to partnerRead More »from Protect the Earth! Your help is needed to find potentially-dangerous asteroids