An asteroid is passing Earth today, so scientists call it radio waves

The antenna array at the HAARP facility includes 180 antennas spread over 33 acres.

HAARP The facility’s array of antennas includes 180 antennas spread over 33 acres.
picture: HAARP

A group of researchers Try Radio signals are bounced off a 500-foot-wide asteroid during its flyby Land Tuesday.

The High Frequency Active Aurora Program (HAARP) directs its antennas to asteroid 2010 XC15, a space rock classified as close-A potentially dangerous meteorite. Effort is a test to prepare for a larger body, known as Apophis, Which will meet our planet closely in 2029.

“What’s new and what we’re trying to do is examine the interiors of asteroids using long-wave radar and radio telescopes from Earth,” said Mark Hynes, principal investigator on the project and a radar systems engineer at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California. . a statement. “The longer wavelengths can penetrate the body much better than the radio wavelengths used for communications.”

HAARP is a research center in Gakona, Alaska (which was The subject of many conspiracy theories). It is made up of 180 high-frequency antennas, each 72 feet tall and spanning 33 acres. the Installation transmits radio packets to The ionosphere, the ionized part of the atmosphere Located It is approximately 50 to 400 miles (80 to 600 kilometers) above Earth’s surface. HAARP sends radio signals into the ionosphere and waits to see how they return, with the goal of measuring, among other things, disturbances caused by the sun.

The ease Launch a science campaign in October With 13 experiments, including one that involved bouncing signals from the Moon. At the time, HAARP researchers Consider sending a radio signal to an asteroid to examine the interior of a rocky body.

During today’s experiment, T.JHAARP antennas in Alaska will send radio signals to the asteroid, Then the scholars check If the reflected signals arrive to me Antenna arrays at the University of New Mexico Long Wavelength Array and ca Owens Valley Radio Matrix Longwave.

HAARP will send a continuous chirp signal just above and below 9.6MHz; The beep will be repeated in two intervals. At its closest approach on December 27, the asteroid will be twice as far from the Moon as it is from Earth.

Tuesday’s experiment aims to prepare for an upcoming encounter with an asteroid in 2029. This potentially dangerous asteroid, officially known as 99942 Apophis, about 1210 ft (370 meters) wideAnd he will enter 20,000 miles (32,000 km) me Earth on April 13, 2029. The NEO was thought to pose a slight hazard to Earth in the year 2068, but NASA ruled that out.

However, HAARP wants to examine the asteroid to prepare for potential hazards in the future space rocks. “The more time before a potential impact occurs, the more options there are to try to distract,” Haynes said.

In September, NASA’s DART spacecraft nanometerLocked in small asteroid And succeeded in changing its orbit. Such a strategy Maybe A way to transform space rocks that threaten Land.

Today Examination Shows the possibility of using long-wave radio signals for investigation inside asteroids. “If we can put the systems in place on Earth, that will give us a lot of opportunities to try and figure out what’s inside these objects,” Haynes said.

Next: The strong bounce effect amplified NASA’s experiment of asteroid deflection

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