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KSC Planetary Defense Coordination Division - An Asteroid Day Challenge!


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Every year on the anniversary of the 1908 Tunguska impact (June 30th), people and kerbals from around the world celebrate Asteroid Day. On this day they learn about asteroids, their role in the formation of our solar system, the impact hazard they may pose, how we can use their resources, and how asteroids can pave the way for future exploration.

This year, the KSC is holding a brainstorming competition in order to come up with ideas for future asteroid and comet related missions, but more importantly, to ensure the safety of kerbalkind in case of an impact.

u6zu2C3.png

Here is where you and all the brilliant scientists and engineers around Kerbin come in: Imagine that you are in charge of the Planetary Defense Coordination Division at the KSC. You learn that an asteroid is on its way to Kerbin and impact is imminent. What would you do to prevent the asteroid from hitting Kerbin?

To successfully complete this challenge, you’ll need to:

  • Pitch an idea for a planetary defense mission against potential asteroid/comet impacts. 
  • Perform a proof of concept in-game. Use the game to test your idea.
  • Post a video and/or screenshots on this thread to help sell your pitch.
  • Vote for your favorite ideas by liking individual posts on this thread.
  • Mods are allowed, but are not mandatory.

You have until 4pm PT on June 27th to complete the challenge and submit your idea.

  • Submissions will be reviewed by Asteroid Day judges Ed Lu (American physicist and former NASA astronaut) and Richard Garriott (Video game developer and private astronaut).
  • The judges will select five of the most interesting or effective missions as the challenge winners.
  • Challenge winners will be announced on Asteroid Day social media on June 30th. 
  • The five challenge winners will receive an Asteroid Day hat and patch.


Good luck!

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2 hours ago, The Doodling Astronaut said:

speaking of Ed Lu, apparently he is part of the B612 group who is trying to make an asteroid detection system, and it looks like some KSP parts where inspired by it:

800px-Sentinel_Space_Telescope.jpg

Anyway, interesting find in research of my submission :P

though the sentinel was sadly scrapped :(

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6 hours ago, NJC2 said:

The only true Kerbal way to redirect an asteroid is have Jeb get out and push it off course.

The true, true Kerbal way is to strap Jeb and a bunch of SRBs to it and fire them off! :cool: 

...

Okay, I'm gonna go do that now.

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ill crash those asteroids today (or tommorow idk, i want to play my new game on my phone). and that means, rendesvouz, c'mon, im bad at it.

Edited by JB182
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I would assume that this is about pushing the asteroid with some kind of engine.  It would need a huge amount of fuel/energy, it could not be transported from Kerbin, and ISRU would be mandatory.  I think IRL it's going to depend a lot on the chemical composition of the asteroid.  KSP allows you to mine an asteroid to make liquid fuel and oxygen, but IRL that isn't necessarily feasible.  It might be reasonable to assume an asteroid has water ice that would allow electrolysis, and perhaps that could be done with massive solar panels or a huge nuclear reactor.  The scale would be enormous, and a very Kerbal thing to do.

Edit:  The concept I am working on is building a mass driver / with a nuclear rocket engine that mines the asteroid for propellant.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asteroid_impact_avoidance.  I can model a realistic craft that can provide a continuous thrust of about 200kN.  This could accelerate a body such as the Tunguska comet (560,000 kt) at 0.36 mm/s .  I have no idea if that would be sufficient to deflect an asteroid enough to prevent an impact from a future threat, it all depends on how big the object, and how long the craft pushes.

I have designed the craft to carry Kerbals as there would likely need to be real time piloting and engineering required to avoid issue with communications lag and unforeseen events. It is large and heavy, so will be modular and assembled in low Kerbin orbit.  Where possible it will be re-useable.

Edited by jinnantonix
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Hey!
I would love to join to the challenge, but do not understand where is the starting point. Is there somewhere a save which I can load and have an asteroid targeting the Kerbin or what? 
About which asteroid this challenge is about? 

:targetpro:

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15 hours ago, KSPStar said:

Show us how it's done!

Well. We are taking about a space force right? So what about a giant missle? To destroy the astroid. I think a class e asteroid has an impact tolerance of about 160 m/s. 

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13 hours ago, exMagic said:

Hey!
I would love to join to the challenge, but do not understand where is the starting point. Is there somewhere a save which I can load and have an asteroid targeting the Kerbin or what? 
About which asteroid this challenge is about? 

 

I've got the same questions.

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3 hours ago, LHACK4142 said:

I've got the same questions.

 

16 hours ago, exMagic said:

Hey!
I would love to join to the challenge, but do not understand where is the starting point.

I think the best one would be to launch it then intercept any asteroid probably...

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