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NASA's WISE Mission Finds First Trojan Asteroid Sharing Earth's Orbit

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posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:13 PM
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NASA's WISE Mission Finds First Trojan Asteroid Sharing Earth's Orbit


www.nasa.gov

PASADENA, Calif. – Astronomers studying observations taken by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission have discovered the first known "Trojan" asteroid orbiting the sun along with Earth.

Trojans are asteroids that share an orbit with a planet near stable points in front of or behind the planet. Because they constantly lead or follow in the same orbit as the planet, they never can collide with it. In our solar system, Trojans also share orbits with Neptune, Mars and Jupiter. Two of Saturn's moons share orbits with Trojans.

Scientists had predicted Earth should have
(visit the link for the full news article)


Related News Links:
io9.com
arstechnica.com
www.guardian.co.uk
blogs.discovermagazine.com

Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
OFFICIAL and CONFIRMED: NASA to send astronauts to asteroid VESTA!
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posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:13 PM
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So, last week NASA announced they would be planning a manned mission to an yet, unnamed asteroid, and a thread was started in which I made the mistake of assuming it was the asteroid "Vesta," having been excited at the new article, and with the thread last week involving similarities between the movie "Deep Impact," and what's happening today in the news, around the world, and whatnot, assumed because on each article was a picture of the asteroid Vesta, wrongly assumed the manned mission was to be to Vesta...made sense, but ultimately was a mistake in my port, claiming NASA announced a mission to VESTA. This time, I won't make a mistake. I'm not saying NASA is planning a mission to this this asteroid, currently named "Asteroid 2010 TK7," but there is room for speculation, since it is Earth's first discovered "Trojan" asteroid, could this possibly be the reason for the scrapping of the space shuttle program for a more daunting task? How much of a threat does an asteroid of this magnitude pose, "if" it were some how to come into the planetary orbit of Earth's orbit around the sun?

I will admit, I haven't been keeping up with Astronomy that much until recently with the fears of Comet Elenin, and the conspiracies surround it, especially on ATS, so when I read "Trojan" asteroid, I had to look it up. What is a trojan asteroid?

en.wikipedia.org...

"In astronomy, the word trojan refers to a minor planet or natural satellite (moon) that shares an orbit with a larger planet or moon, but does not collide with it because it orbits around one of the two Lagrangian points of stability (Trojan points), L4 and L5, which lie 60° ahead of and behind the larger body."

So we have an asteroid, we just discovered that is like a natural satellite of the earth. All these years with all our telescopes, and we're just seeing it. Interesting! The reason NASA says we can't see it is, ""These asteroids dwell mostly in the daylight, making them very hard to see," said Martin Connors of Athabasca University in Canada, lead author of a new paper on the discovery in the July 28 issue of the journal Nature. "But we finally found one, because the object has an unusual orbit that takes it farther away from the sun than what is typical for Trojans. WISE was a game-changer, giving us a point of view difficult to have at Earth's surface."

Dwell mostly in daylight... Okay, so what about radio telescopes? Why didn't they pick it up?

Let's check out the size of this baby: 1,000 feet in diameter. That's pretty big. Bigger than what created the crater in Winnsboro, AZ anyway. MUCH bigger.

I'm just becoming less and less surprised with these "new" discoveries that seem to be so big, how can they be passed up?

They also found a new moon orbiting Pluto today in the news (or it could have been yesterday)

So we have a Trojan Asteroid that follows an orbit, that NASA says we are always playing chase with. What size comet would it take to alter the asteroids orbit, or slow, or speed it up, so that Earth isn't "playing chase," but rather, playing "RUN!"

NASA to send manned mission to "an" asteroid indeed.

www.aolnews.com...

Why does NASA keep us guessing, and always surprising us with a "herp" we just found out, honest!




www.nasa.gov
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:41 PM
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reply to post by N34Li3Z
 

There will be no manned mission to it.

Asteroid 2010 TK7 is not a good target because it travels too far above and below the plane of Earth's orbit, which would require large amounts of fuel to reach it.

www.nasa.gov...

The asteroid is not a "natural satellite of Earth". It is orbiting a point distant from Earth.

It was not found with radio telescopes because it does not emit radio energy.

It would take something more massive than a comet to disturb its orbit.

NASA is about science. Science is about learning new things.

edit on 7/27/2011 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:42 PM
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reply to post by N34Li3Z
 






Trojans are asteroids that share an orbit with a planet, circling around the sun in front of or behind the planet. Because they ride in the same orbit as a planet, they never cross its path, and never collide with the planet. They circle around stable gravity wells, called Lagrange points.


Im curious.. Is it at all possible that these Lagrange points could be altered, perhaps by solar flares, something changing int he sun, or maybe even an eclips that could cause it to travel towards the earth? We know that the moon causes tides on our planet. What's the possibility that the moon could have some sort of gravitational effect if it were at the right place at the right time, that could cause it to hurl towards us?

Just a thought.



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:46 PM
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Does this have anything to do with it. Found it on some server.



edit on 27-7-2011 by FriendlyGopher because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:47 PM
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Originally posted by N34Li3Z

So we have a Trojan Asteroid that follows an orbit, that NASA says we are always playing chase with. What size comet would it take to alter the asteroids orbit, or slow, or speed it up, so that Earth isn't "playing chase," but rather, playing "RUN!"

NASA to send manned mission to "an" asteroid indeed.



Spookier idea.. What if the illuminati wants to hurl it towards us and that's what NASA's secret plan to do, to give it a nudge and send it our way to thin out the population


Ok, it's a bit much, but I'm sure someone might run with it... hehehe

But hey... It could happen right? If there are TPTB doing some truely evil stuff.. (shrugs) what if?



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:47 PM
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I think the OP completely missed out one important factor on the article;

"Because they constantly lead or follow in the same orbit as the planet, they never can collide with it."



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 04:51 PM
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reply to post by FriendlyGopher
 


interesting! en.wikipedia.org...



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 05:00 PM
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reply to post by CasiusIgnoranze
 



no, I read that sir. but you see, every day we seem to find "undiscovered" bodies in our solar system, science emerges with new technologies, scientist correct themselves, and the fact they say "never" makes me want to figure out why "never," and what could possibly make that "never," change into a "only if a ____ were to occur, but thanks for the trollific reply, definately contributed something intelligent.

This forum, this site, it's primarily dedicated to solving, or analysizing the "what if's"

What IF something/someone? were to alter the physics/course/etc of this asteroid. We're in a site, on threads dealing with imaginative speculation on real world situations, and not all of us quietly swallow scientific dogma as truth.

When you start subscribing to science as an unshakeable dogmatic religion, instead of a dynamically changing area of human observation of our world, reality, you might as well turn on CNN and get zombified.

Not to sound to be an ass, but I really found nothing intelligent in your post, and not to say you aren't intelligent, but intelligence does not trump creativity. Just trying to piece together things my friend. the OP did indeed understand what the article said.


Have a wicked sweet, awesome and tantalizing day my friend, and look forward to more lengthy, detailed replies from you in the future sir! p.s. The thread was basically started as it was breaking news, and related to previous threads on ATS regarding asteroids, manned mission, etc.



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 05:08 PM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by N34Li3Z
 

There will be no manned mission to it.

Asteroid 2010 TK7 is not a good target because it travels too far above and below the plane of Earth's orbit, which would require large amounts of fuel to reach it.

www.nasa.gov...

The asteroid is not a "natural satellite of Earth". It is orbiting a point distant from Earth.

It was not found with radio telescopes because it does not emit radio energy.

It would take something more massive than a comet to disturb its orbit.

NASA is about science. Science is about learning new things.

edit on 7/27/2011 by Phage because: (no reason given)


not a natural satellite of earth? I admit wikipedia isn't always right, but here is where it says this:

en.wikipedia.org... In astronomy, the word trojan refers to a minor planet or ***NATURAL*** satellite (moon) that shares an orbit with a larger planet or moon, but does not collide with it because it orbits around one of the two Lagrangian points of stability (Trojan points), L4 and L5, which lie 60° ahead of and behind the larger body.

no radio energy? you're right on that one, thanks. I was thinking there was a telescope that used a type of radar, and bounced back reflected radar images, don't know why I thought of that, I'm definately not a astronomy buff, I do like theoretical astrophysics, but weirdly enough, never got into astronomy in school

I don't know the physics of asteroid orbit alteration, but I agree, it would take something big, or a very powerful energy source, or yet known form of energy to alter it.

How about a manned mission with spaceship strapped with high tech atomic weapons. Would that alter it? Or just break it into small pieces. 1000 meters moving at X rate of speed. ??



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 05:13 PM
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reply to post by N34Li3Z
 

The wiki entry is talking about two different types of trojans. One type, like this asteroid, is a minor planet which orbits the Sun and shares an orbit with Earth. The other type would be a moon orbiting a planet and sharing an orbit with another moon.

How about space sharks with lasers strapped to their heads?



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 05:27 PM
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Originally posted by Phage


How about space sharks with lasers strapped to their heads?



I am FIRMLY against them as they are fiscally and ecologically irresponsible.




posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 06:23 PM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by N34Li3Z
 

The wiki entry is talking about two different types of trojans. One type, like this asteroid, is a minor planet which orbits the Sun and shares an orbit with Earth. The other type would be a moon orbiting a planet and sharing an orbit with another moon.

How about space sharks with lasers strapped to their heads?



LOL, okay. Would you settle for a "cosmic alligator" eating it's way through the sky? =P

Nasa link on the cosmic alligator: www.nasa.gov...



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 08:03 PM
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Originally posted by N34Li3Z

not a natural satellite of earth? I admit wikipedia isn't always right, but here is where it says this:

en.wikipedia.org... In astronomy, the word trojan refers to a minor planet or ***NATURAL*** satellite (moon) that shares an orbit with a larger planet or moon, but does not collide with it because it orbits around one of the two Lagrangian points of stability (Trojan points), L4 and L5, which lie 60° ahead of and behind the larger body.


Right - so it is NOT orbiting the larger body (in this case Earth) - it is orbiting the SUN, in the same orbit as the larger body (Earth).

so it is a "natural satellite" - but of the sun, not of Earth.


edit on 27-7-2011 by Aloysius the Gaul because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 09:00 PM
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So, is there a name or term for planetary bodies that share the same orbit?

In this case it is a "trojan" because it is at the L4 or L5 point 60 degrees ahead or behind another body. If not in those points it would or could be orbiting at a different velocity? But in the same orbital plane if it were behind and gaining (or the reverse) and reached that L4-5 point it would "lock-in" (due to gravitational properties??) and no longer pose a problem, except how the OP is attempting to determine?

So, Earth has a twin,dual,co-orbiting, body - whatever the term - and we are "safe" because it is a trojan there will be no intercourse between the two bodies? They won't mingle? I've heard that before.



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 09:10 PM
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i have just one question for debunkers. you constantly say we would see it in our system. oh yeah, think we would have seen an asteroid neighbor too. i mean with all the amateur astronomers and all right. check out article: www.nasa.gov...



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 10:12 PM
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Originally posted by letscit
i have just one question for debunkers. you constantly say we would see it in our system. oh yeah, think we would have seen an asteroid neighbor too. i mean with all the amateur astronomers and all right. check out article: www.nasa.gov...


We would see what in our system??

a brown dwarf certainly - its gravitation effects would be patently obvious probably decades before it "arrived", and we can be completely sure there isn't one nearby due the absence of any such unexplained effects.

smaller objects such as asteroids and comets? No-one has ever said we know where all of those are.

So what is it you think debunkers are actually "guilty off" (as it were)??



posted on Jul, 27 2011 @ 10:20 PM
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Originally posted by Erongaricuaro
So, is there a name or term for planetary bodies that share the same orbit?


Co-orbital?


In this case it is a "trojan" because it is at the L4 or L5 point 60 degrees ahead or behind another body. If not in those points it would or could be orbiting at a different velocity? But in the same orbital plane if it were behind and gaining (or the reverse) and reached that L4-5 point it would "lock-in" (due to gravitational properties??) and no longer pose a problem, except how the OP is attempting to determine?


well it wold have to be catching up or being caught up very slowly - or else we'd have done so a very long time ago!! :lol

given a very, very, slow congruance, I suspect that a stable equilibriaum would be achieved at a Trojan point.


So, Earth has a twin,dual,co-orbiting, body - whatever the term - and we are "safe" because it is a trojan there will be no intercourse between the two bodies? They won't mingle? I've heard that before.


There is no such object - again we know this because its gravitational effects would ahve been visible a very long time ago - it was the 1840's when astronomers were able to deduce the existance of Neptune from variations in the speed of Uranus, and the effects of relativity on the orbit of Mercury were discovered in 1859 (but obviously not explained then) - for a while it was thought there must be another planet closer to the sun (hypothetically named Vulcan).

Any substantial body on the same orbit as Earth would have had significant effects on at least Venus and Mars that would have been noticed by abotu the same time - if not sooner IMO.



posted on Jul, 28 2011 @ 07:03 AM
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reply to post by N34Li3Z
 


This is the news release:

- - - NASA News Letter - - -

News release: 2011-230 July 27, 2011

NASA's Wise Mission Finds First Trojan Asteroid Sharing Earth's Orbit

The full version of this story with accompanying images is at:
www.jpl.nasa.gov...

PASADENA, Calif. – Astronomers studying observations taken by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission have discovered the first known "Trojan" asteroid orbiting the sun along with Earth.

Trojans are asteroids that share an orbit with a planet near stable points in front of or behind the planet. Because they constantly lead or follow in the same orbit as the planet, they never can collide with it. In our solar system, Trojans also share orbits with Neptune, Mars and Jupiter. Two of Saturn's moons share orbits with Trojans.

Scientists had predicted Earth should have Trojans, but they have been difficult to find because they are relatively small and appear near the sun from Earth's point of view.

"These asteroids dwell mostly in the daylight, making them very hard to see," said Martin Connors of Athabasca University in Canada, lead author of a new paper on the discovery in the July 28 issue of the journal Nature. "But we finally found one, because the object has an unusual orbit that takes it farther away from the sun than what is typical for Trojans. WISE was a game-changer, giving us a point of view difficult to have at Earth's surface."

The WISE telescope scanned the entire sky in infrared light from January 2010 to February 2011. Connors and his team began their search for an Earth Trojan using data from NEOWISE, an addition to the WISE mission that focused in part on near-Earth objects, or NEOs, such as asteroids and comets. NEOs are bodies that pass within 28 million miles (45 million kilometers) of Earth's path around the sun. The NEOWISE project observed more than 155,000 asteroids in the main belt between Mars and Jupiter, and more than 500 NEOs, discovering 132 that were previously unknown.

The team's hunt resulted in two Trojan candidates. One called 2010 TK7 was confirmed as an Earth Trojan after follow-up observations with the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope on Mauna Kea in Hawaii.

The asteroid is roughly 1,000 feet (300 meters) in diameter. It has an unusual orbit that traces a complex motion near a stable point in the plane of Earth's orbit, although the asteroid also moves above and below the plane. The object is about 50 million miles (80 million kilometers) from Earth. The asteroid's orbit is well-defined and for at least the next 100 years, it will not come closer to Earth than 15 million miles (24 million kilometers). An animation showing the orbit is available at: www.nasa.gov... .

"It's as though Earth is playing follow the leader," said Amy Mainzer, the principal investigator of NEOWISE at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "Earth always is chasing this asteroid around."

A handful of other asteroids also have orbits similar to Earth. Such objects could make excellent candidates for future robotic or human exploration. Asteroid 2010 TK7 is not a good target because it travels too far above and below the plane of Earth's orbit, which would require large amounts of fuel to reach it.

"This observation illustrates why NASA's NEO Observation program funded the mission enhancement to process data collected by WISE," said Lindley Johnson, NEOWISE program executive at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "We believed there was great potential to find objects in near-Earth space that had not been seen before."

NEOWISE data on orbits from the hundreds of thousands of asteroids and comets it observed are available through the NASA-funded International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Cambridge, Mass.

JPL manages and operates WISE for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The principal investigator, Edward Wright, is a professor at the University of California, Los Angeles. The mission was selected under NASA's Explorers Program, which is managed by the agency's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. The science instrument was built by the Space Dynamics Laboratory in Logan, Utah.

The spacecraft was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo. Science operations and data processing take place at the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. Caltech manages JPL for NASA.

For more WISE information visit: www.nasa.gov... .

Whitney Clavin 818-354-4673
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
whitney.clavin@jpl.nasa.gov

Trent J. Perrotto 202-358-0321
Headquarters, Washington
trent.j.perrotto@nasa.gov

- - - End NASA News Letter - - -



posted on Jul, 28 2011 @ 07:14 AM
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Originally posted by Aloysius the Gaul

. . . . a brown dwarf certainly - its gravitation effects . . . . . .


They're called "little people". -sheesh-

___________________________________________________________

I don't know why people are surprized that we still find stuff in our solar system.. We find mammals that have never been discovered every decade, and they are ON the planet.
edit on 28-7-2011 by beezzer because: al



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