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Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Mar 21, 2005 15:39:44 GMT -6
Now this is a cool initiative from the U.S. Government...
Congress Moves on Amateur Asteroid-Watching Bill
MARCH 21 -
The U.S. House of Representative’s Science Committee on March 17 passed a bill that would help discover near-Earth asteroids.
Passed by voice vote last week, the bill -- House Resolution 1023 (HR 1023) -- is also known as the Charles "Pete" Conrad Astronomy Awards Act and has been championed by Congressman Dana Rohrabacher.
The bill is named for the third man to walk on the Moon. Conrad died in 1999 as the result of injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident.
The bill authorizes the NASA Administrator to establish an awards program in honor of Conrad that flags the discoveries and contributions made by amateur astronomers regarding asteroids with near-Earth orbit trajectories.
Cash awards are called for in the bill, to encourage amateur astronomers to discover and track near-Earth asteroids. An award under the program is valued at $3,000. You have to be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States at the time of the discovery or contribution to receive an award under the Act.
The NASA Administrator would make awards under the program based on the recommendations of the Minor Planet Center of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Science Committee Chairman Sherwood Boehlert noted that the U.S. Senate ran out of time in taking the bill up last go-round, but was optimistic about it moving through the entire process this Congress.
As our asteroid hunter, this is right up your alley... ;D
Chicago Astronomer Joe Founder, Administrator and Chief Astronomer
Telescope/Observatory Docent Facilitator Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
Astronomy Instructor Instituto Del Progresso/IHSCA
Astronomy Program Instructor British International School of Chicago /Lincoln Park Campus
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