Re: Deep Impact

Anton Sherwood (
Fri, 13 Mar 1998 23:58:16 -0700

> Michael Lorrey <> writes:
> > ... since its alread in near earth orbit, simply put a
> > small mass driver or plasma thruster and some solar panels on it. Use a
> > portion of its own mass as reaction mass, with solar power for driver
> > energy.

Anders Sandberg wrote:
> This will take a while, but would be very nice for a Toutatis-type
> asteroid in an orbit close to the Earth's. The problem is the quick
> ones (like new comets) that might sweep through the Earth-moon system
> once in a while, we have less time to do something about them after
> discovery than the Toutatis NEOs and they have a much larger velocity
> vector. More heroic measures may be needed, since we need a much
> larger isp.

Here's a wacky idea:
Suppose we've already got a couple of dozen asteroids captured, orbiting
Earth somewhere outside geosynch. If the motors that put them there
haven't been dismantled, could one of these rocks be shifted into the
path of a killer comet, to deflect it and/or break it up?

"How'd ya like to climb this high without no mountain?" --Porky Pine
Anton Sherwood   *\\*   +1 415 267 0685
!! visiting New Mexico, end of March !!