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Smart Cloud : A novel method for the deflection and mitigation of asteroids

Gibbings, Alison and Vasile, Massimiliano (2012) Smart Cloud : A novel method for the deflection and mitigation of asteroids. In: Astrobiology Science Conference 2012, 2012-04-16 - 2012-04-20.

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For the successful mitigation of asteroids a new deflection technique is proposed. SMART CLOUD combines the relative benefits of the kinematic impactor and the ion beam shepard in providing the release and subsequent impact of a high velocity dense cloud, of low mass, nano-size particles. Over an extended region of space, each impact caused by hundreds and thousands of these small size particles is significantly smaller than the disruption limit of fragmentation of the asteroid. Sputtering might occur but the asteroid will not fragment.