The Use of Nuclear Explosives To Disrupt or Divert Asteroids

So, one day, some Google employees were sitting around thinking, well, we totally don’t want to sit through another seminar on testing Ajax applications, or some shit.

So, what other subject could we have a talk on? Oh, how about the use of nuclear explosives to disrupt or divert dangerous near-Earth asteroids!

Very interesting stuff.

Certainly, over the last century, since the Tunguska event, and especially over the last 30 years with Alvarez’s understanding of the K-T extinction, and the observation of the Shoemaker-Levy 9 collision, the potential for an impact event on the Earth, and what the ramifications of such an event could be, have been taken more seriously.

Whilst such events have occurred throughout the history of the planet, it is only in our time, over the last 50 years, with our astronomy capabilities, space-based remote sensing, computational physics, spacecraft propulsion and nuclear weapons that we actually have the means to detect, characterise, and if necessary to destroy such an object.

If you look at the entire library of videos of talks and presentations given at Google, there is a huge wealth of really, really cool stuff, spanning a great many different subjects.


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