A Space-Borne Near-Earth Asteroid Detection System

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Session 15 -- Solar and Solar-System Physics
Oral presentation, Monday, 10:30-12:00, Dwinelle 145 Room

[15.03] A Space-Borne Near-Earth Asteroid Detection System

B.V.Jackson, A.Buffington, P.L. Hick (UCSD), D.F.Webb (ISR)

\noindent We have designed a Solar Mass Ejection Imager (SMEI) to image transient heliospheric features from Earth orbit over the entire sky once every 90 minutes. The instrument is designed to detect changes in the signals from electrons which Thomson-scatter sunlight to a brightness level of tenth magnitude per square degree of sky. Here, we explore the additional possibility of using such an instrument to detect asteroids passing near the Earth. We predict that SMEI will discover about 14 asteroids per year over $\sim$12 m in radius and about 10 meteors in the range 0.5 -- 5.0 m in radius.

Monday program listing