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Free and easy to use information when asteroids pass closer than the Moon. Stretch - take photos of all of these asteroids
Free and easy to use information when asteroids pass closer than the Moon
Free and easy to use information when asteroids pass closer than the Moon
81 backers pledged AU$ 3,158 to help bring this project to life.

About

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Asteroid What! - Very Near Earth Asteroids

AU$ 3,158

81

Fully funded! Help us reach our stretch so we can take images of all of the asteroids that we create alerts for.

We want to create accessible information about asteroids that fly closer than the Moon - there were forty of these in the last 12 months. (Note: two flew past in the first week of the campaign!)

We will do this by taking data already available to scientists, putting it in one place and making the information clear for everyone. For our backers, we’ll produce a special Asteroid Alert Email too - exclusive for a year!

These asteroids are the most easily accessible from Earth, making them the most advantageous for conducting science and mining. We think that everyone should be able to know this information, because space belongs to all. We’ll display data that estimates the extent of valuable materials that they contain and how much energy that they store.

Asteroid Alert Email Prototype
Asteroid Alert Email Prototype

We need your help

Our team have been investigating the very closest approaching asteroids for the last year, winning an international award with a research paper. We found that it was super hard for us to find easy to read information on asteroids, let alone Very Near Earth Asteroids... even though half of us have PhDs.

We need funds to develop the website where we're placing this information and to create Asteroid Alert Emails as soon as these asteroids are discovered. Very Near Earth Asteroids are generally discovered less than two weeks before their flyby - some even just after they've passed. This means that the information needs to be released as soon as they are found, for maximum usefulness. 

It's important that people can find and understand this information easily, as worldwide asteroid detection and follow-up efforts rely heavily on amateurs. This means the more people that are involved, the better.

The website also shows the orbits of all of the known asteroids in the Solar System. We've already created a beta version and it's now available online (you're one of the first to see it!).

Asteroid What beta
Asteroid What beta

Rewards

We want you to be first to know about asteroids that fly very near to the Earth, so most reward tiers include access to Asteroid Alert Emails, which are exclusive to backers for a year.

Other rewards include 3D prints of asteroids (shown below), the same used by space agencies to provide tactile information to mission scientists.

3D print of the asteroid Toutatis - the largest Near Earth Asteroid at 5km (3 miles) long
3D print of the asteroid Toutatis - the largest Near Earth Asteroid at 5km (3 miles) long

We also have High Earth Orbit (HEO) Robotics Tees and Hoodies.

We want you to help us shape the way we present information, and the "Size Matters" tier gives you the opportunity to choose size comparison figures.

Size Comparison (you could do better than this!)
Size Comparison (you could do better than this!)

For the very adventurous, we have a special tier where we'll call backers as well as sending an email every time that an asteroid is discovered that will pass closer than the Moon.

Who we are

We call our team High Earth Orbit (HEO) Robotics. The team consists of William Crowe (Aerospace Engineer), Hiranya Jayakody (Mechatronics Engineer), Dr Michael Woods (Mechatronics Engineer) and Dr Steve Cossell (Computer Scientist).

Hiranya, Will, Michael and Steve, wearing our Tees that are available to backers
Hiranya, Will, Michael and Steve, wearing our Tees that are available to backers

We're always looking for constructive feedback and so let us know what you think in the comments.

Project Goals

If we exceed our target, it will be possible to unlock our exciting stretch goals!

Stretch 1 - We will endeavor to capture photos of the Very Near Earth Asteroids as they pass by the Earth. We will do this by booking remote telescope time and then share the resulting pictures with our backers.

Asteroid 2016 LT1 was discovered and passed a few days after our project went live. It passed within 38% of the Moon's distance from the Earth
Asteroid 2016 LT1 was discovered and passed a few days after our project went live. It passed within 38% of the Moon's distance from the Earth

Stretch 2 - Some of the asteroids that pass very close by Earth are not even detected! There is a gap in detection capability over the Southern Hemisphere - where our team is based. Our team will start planning for a telescope that could cover this gap and discover asteroids that we would not have known about otherwise.

Risks and challenges

The challenges involved with this project largely involve engineering - using data intelligently to find solutions. That's our profession and we look forward to it!

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 1 or more About $0.73

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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  2. Reward no longer available

    Pledge AU$ 5 or more About $4

    A special early-bird offer

    Receive Asteroid Alert emails whenever an asteroid comes closer than the Moon. You will be able to change settings if that proves too many to handle.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    Reward no longer available 14 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 10 or more About $7

    Receive Asteroid Alert emails whenever an asteroid comes closer than the Moon. You will be able to change settings if that proves too many to handle.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    19 backers
    AU$
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 25 or more About $18

    We'll send you a 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis (dimensions 5cm × 2cm)

    You'll also receive asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 14 backers
    AU$
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 55 or more About $40

    We'll send you a High Earth Orbit Robotics T-shirt in white or black

    You'll also receive asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 9 backers
    AU$
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 65 or more About $47

    We'll send you a High Earth Orbit Robotics hoodie in black

    You'll also receive asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    Limited 3 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 70 or more About $51

    We'll send you a High Earth Orbit Robotics T-shirt in white or black.

    And we'll send you a 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis and asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    Limited 7 backers
    AU$
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 80 or more About $58

    We'll send you a High Earth Orbit Robotics hoodie in black.

    And we'll send you a 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis and asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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    Limited 1 backer
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 100 or more About $73

    Full Swag

    We'll send you a High Earth Orbit Robotics hoodie in black and T-shirt in white or black.

    And we'll send you a 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis and asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by"

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 120 or more About $87

    Size Matters

    Choose a country, famous landmark or figure in history to compare asteroid sizes to on Asteroid What and in the Alert Emails.

    And we'll send you a T-shirt, 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis and asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by - special mention"

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 350 or more About $255

    Tour the facility

    We want to show you around our offices in Sydney, Australia, the next time that you're in town.

    We'll also send you a T-shirt, 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis and asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by - special mention"

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    Pledge AU$ 4,000 or more About $2,914

    Do you want for us to call you at all hours when an asteroid is coming close by? We didn't think so. But if you do, we have you covered. We'll call you at the time that we have confirmation of the asteroid discovery and we'll do it for all close asteroids for a year (or until you ask us to stop).

    We'll also send you a T-shirt, 3D print of the asteroid Toutatis and asteroid alert emails.

    We'll put your name on the website under the title "funded by - super special mention"

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    Limited 0 backers
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Funding period

- (27 days)