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NASA Highlights Asteroid Grand Challenge at World Maker Faire
17 Sep 2013
(Source: NASA)

This concept image shows an astronaut preparing to take samples from the captured asteroid after it has been relocated to a stable orbit in the Earth-moon system. Hundreds of rings are affixed to the asteroid capture bag, helping the astronaut carefully navigate the surface. Image Credit: NASA
This concept image shows an astronaut preparing to take samples from the captured asteroid after it has been relocated to a stable orbit in the Earth-moon system. Hundreds of rings are affixed to the asteroid capture bag, helping the astronaut carefully navigate the surface. Image Credit: NASA

NASA is reaching out to a new community for ideas on how to find and track potentially hazardous asteroids, and protect the planet from their impacts. The World Maker Faire is being held Sept. 21-22 at the New York Hall of Science, 47-01 111th St., in New York.

The World Maker Faire is a festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness - the exact qualities NASA is looking for to help in solving the global challenge asteroid threats present.

NASA Chief Technologist Mason Peck will be on hand to talk about how Makers can help shape space exploration and be a critical player in NASA's asteroid initiative.

"Unlike traditional NASA missions of exploration and science, this grand challenge is driven by the idea that protecting our planet is an issue bigger than any one program, mission or country," Peck said. "For the first time, NASA has reached out to industry, academia, stakeholder organizations and private citizens for ideas on how to find, track and deflect asteroids. These partnerships represent a new way of doing business for NASA and a call to action for Makers: join us to become a critical part of the future of space exploration."

NASA will offer Makers a chance to program science hardware and learn how small, do-it-yourself projects might be used to help track and understand asteroids, using their own personal computers. NASA also will showcase the Centennial Challenges Program, with winning teams and technology from the Astronaut Glove and Sample Robot Return challenges.

Media interested in attending Maker Faire should register online at: http://makerfaire.com

Media interested in speaking to Peck should contact Sarah Ramsey at sarah.ramsey@nasa.gov.

NASA's asteroid initiative has two parts: the mission by astronauts to explore an asteroid and a grand challenge to protect the planet. It is included in President Obama's fiscal year 2014 budget request for NASA, and leverages the agency's progress on asteroid discovery and study, the Space Launch System rocket, Orion spacecraft and cutting-edge technology development.

For more information about NASA's asteroid initiative, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/asteroidinitiative


Sarah Ramsey
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-1694
sarah.ramsey@nasa.gov

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