"Finding Near Earth Objects - to Eeduce Human Threats; to Explore NEOs; to Understand the Origins and Evolution of the Solar System"
Since the surprise of the Chelyabinsk meteor impact in February 2013, enhanced public awareness of the possibility of potentially hazardous objects hitting the Earth has drawn attention to the US Congressional mandate that NASA inform them of future possible events. NEOCam - a proposed infrared Discovery Survey Mission, is one of the several complementary thrusts to address this mandate. NEOCam was submitted to NASA in the last Discovery round, and awarded technology funding to develop to the appropriate TRL (technical readiness level) long wavelength infrared detector arrays among other technical enhancements. I will motivate the detector development program, led by my group at the University of Rochester, by describing why they are important for NEOCam. Then I will provide a progress report on the detector development, which is extremely promising. The next Discovery proposal phase will occur in late 2014.
Reception to follow.
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