Feeds

DARPA looking for citizen sky-watchers

Why not find some space junk in your spare time?

The next step in data security

A reader has alerted The Register to a story that passed us by last week: the launch of a DARPA program recruiting amateur astronomers to help identify and catalogue space junk.

Launched here, the SpaceView project would add “citizen scientist” efforts to more expensive space junk searches like the Space Surveillance Network.

The number of known objects in the cloud of detritus surrounding the Earth is more than half a million and growing – every new launch adds to the problem, and collisions between objects are getting more common as they multiply.

By comparison, the Space Surveillance Network is only tracking around 30,000 bits of junk. Hence SpaceView: an attempt to expand the available resources without crippling cost.

The project is currently at the sign-on stage: DARPA wants to know about the “equipment, sites and observing habits” of astronomers interested in joining the program.

The program is looking for sites with equipment that could be upgraded to collect observations under remote control, which would act as a single distributed world-wide sensor. Where a site is selected for inclusion in SpaceView, DARPA will provide the equipment to turn it into an automated observatory.

The first dozen sites will be selected late in 2013. ®

New hybrid storage solutions

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Bacon-related medical breakthrough wins Ig Nobel prize
Is there ANYTHING cured pork can't do?
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Stray positrons caught on ISS hint at DARK MATTER source
Landlubber scope-gazers squint to horizons and see anti-electron count surge
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.