Number 22: 30/10/2003
A scientific publication by SGF and NEODyS

Talking about NEOs' communication

Eclipses, Transits and Impacts by Duncan Steel, Vice-President of the Spaceguard Foundation
One of the major ongoing problems faced by those of us who take the chance of an NEO impact upon the Earth seriously, and want to persuade others likewise so that governments will be prompted to take appropriate action, is the communication of such things as terrestrial collision frequencies in understandable terms. One point I often make to people is that saying that a particular energy level impact has a one in 100,000 probability of occurring per annum sounds quite different to describing that such events occur once every 100,000 years on average...(click for the full article)

NEOs' spacemissions: Haybusa (MUSES C)

Haybusa's exploration Plans for asteroid 25413 Itokawa,
by Kelli B. Grant and Beth Ellen Clark, Ithaca College

One hundred and sixty-five million miles away from Earth, asteroid 25143 Itokawa is on an Earth-approaching orbit, moving between Mars and Jupiter after being pulled out of the asteroid belt by perturbations in Jupiter's gravitational force. Japan's Hayabusa is on its way to intercept and collect samples from the asteroid...(click for the full article)

An interview to Andy Cheng, NASA member for the Orbital LIDAR

"Hayabusa will fly to the asteroid 25143 Itokawa (also named just this year after a Japanese rocketry pioneer) and return samples to Earth. To acquire these samples, Hayabusa will make only momentary contact with its target..." (click for the full interview)

The history of NEOs' science
The author is very grateful to Dr. Duncan Steel for his support in reviewing the English version of this and the other articles of the series

Part II : The solution of the planetary problem by Andrea Carusi, President SGF

A key actor in our story of the Copernican Revolution is Tycho Brahe (1546-1601). Tycho was born three years after the publication of Copernicus's De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium, and one can imagine that he was an enthusiastic supporter of the new theory. In fact he was not: Tycho remained for all his life an opponent of the Copernican theory but, in an ironical turn, he contributed fundamentally to its eventual victory....click for the full article

Editor: Nanni Riccobono
Assistant Editor, web master and graphics: Livia Giacomini (
lagia@tiscalinet.it)

Spaceguard Foundation (SGF) is a private, non profit scientific organization aimed at supporting and co-ordinating NEO researches in the world.
NEO Dynamic Site (NEODyS) is a service offered by the University of Pisa (Italy). It provides catalogues, computation of orbits, and projection of the behavior of NEOs in the future, in order to identify possible impacts in advance.
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Images of the heading: courtesy of NASA