Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Didn't See That In Star Trek

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you:




Actually, it's a proposed means to deflect threatening asteroids into a new orbit - one that wouldn't involve pulverizing some portion of Earth.
Now, two NASA astronauts have presented a plan for an “asteroid tractor”—an unmanned, 20-ton spacecraft that uses the invisible bond of gravity to gently pull an asteroid into a new, non-threatening orbit.

“You can think of it like a big elastic band between the two pulling them together,” said Edward Lu, who presents the concept for the spacecraft with fellow astronaut Stanley Love in the Nov. 10 issue of the journal Nature.

The tractor would hover above the surface of the asteroid, without touching it, and use gravity as a towline. If the spacecraft maintains a consistent distance between it and the asteroid, and always tows in the same direction, this method won’t disturb the asteroid’s rotation or composition.
Personally, I'd think a Death Star-type laser would be better. Plus, the light show would be fun to watch. But that's just me.

So - anybody know if John Deere is available?


Post a Comment

<< Home