On Wednesday, Apr. 18, 2018 at 7 pm, Dr. Michael Busch, of the SETI Institute, will give a free, illustrated, non-technical talk on:
”Rubble Piles in the Sky: The Science, Exploration, and Danger of Near-Earth Asteroids”
in the Smithwick Theater at Foothill College, in Los Altos.
The talk is part of the Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series at Foothill College, now in its 18th year.
Near-Earth asteroids are a population of small bodies whose orbits around the Sun cross or come near our planet’s orbit. They turn out to be unusual physical environments: rubble piles, with shapes and spins determined by effects like the pressure of the Sun’s radiation. Near-Earth asteroids are also accessible targets for spacecraft missions. And they represent a natural hazard we ignore at our peril, because some of these bodies have the potential to impact Earth. Dr. Busch will review the near-Earth population, programs to track and characterize as many near-Earth asteroids as possible, and current efforts to address the danger of asteroid impacts.
Michael Busch is a planetary astronomer based at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California. His research focuses on characterizing near-Earth asteroid shapes, spins, and motions using radar and radio techniques. He obtained his PhD in planetary science at Caltech, and worked as a postdoc at UCLA and at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory before starting as a research scientist at SETI in 2013.
Foothill College is just off the El Monte Road exit from Freeway 280 in Los Altos. For directions and parking information, see: foothill.edu/news/transportation.php
For a campus map, see: foothill.edu/news/maps.php
The lecture is co-sponsored by:
* The Foothill College Astronomy Program
* The SETI Institute
* The Astronomical Society of the Pacific
* NASA’s Ames Research Center.
We get large crowds for these talks, so we ask people to try to arrive a little bit early to find parking. The lecture is free, but there is a charge of $3 for parking on campus and exact change is appreciated.
Past lectures in the series can be found on YouTube at youtube.com/SVAstronomyLectures