Asteroid Day, June 30, live from Luxembourg

The 6th annual Asteroid Day will be held as a digital event on June 30, 2020. It’ll feature presentations with experts, panel discussions, and question-and-answer periods. Here’s how to participate.

Asteroid Day 2020 poster with closeup of potato-shaped gray space rock, and text.

Image via AsteroidDay.org.

Originally published at AsteroidDay.org, with edits via EarthSky.

The Asteroid Foundation returns with Asteroid Day Live Digital from Luxembourg. This year, the event is a fully digital celebration of asteroid science and exploration. Panel discussions and one-on-one interviews with astronauts and world experts will be broadcast on June 30, 2020, beginning at 12:00 CEST (10:0O UTC, 6 a.m EDT). Visit the broadcast schedule to see when Asteroid Day LIVE is playing in your timezone.

The program will repeat multiple times per day from June 30 – July 4.

Asteroid Day Live is streaming over Asteroid Day TV, and the detailed program schedule can be found on the Asteroid Day website. Following Asteroid Day on June 30, the various panels will be available on that website, as well as on YouTube.

Asteroid Day is held on June 30 each year to mark the date of Earth’s largest asteroid impact in recorded history, the Siberia Tunguska event. Asteroid Day was co-founded by astrophysicist and famed musician Dr. Brian May of the rock group Queen, Apollo 9 astronaut Rusty Schweickart, filmmaker Grig Richters, and B612 Foundation president Danica Remy, to educate the public about the importance of asteroids in our history and the role they play in the solar system. In 2016, with the leadership of the Association of Space Explorers (ASE), the United Nations declared Asteroid Day to be a global day of education to raise awareness and promote knowledge in the general public about asteroids. For more information visit AsteroidDay.org.

Each year Asteroid Day presents the public with a snapshot of cutting-edge asteroid research from the largest telescopes on Earth to some of the most ambitious space missions. Topics of discussion this year include the acceleration in the rate of our asteroid discoveries and why it is set to accelerate even faster, the imminent arrival of samples from asteroid Ryugu and Bennu, the exciting preparations for the joint U.S.-Europe mission to binary asteroid Didymos, and much more.

Bright white smoke trail above bare trees in snowy landscape.

Early in the morning on February 15, 2013, a small, previously unknown asteroid entered Earth’s atmosphere at 37,280 miles per hour (66,000 km/h) and exploded high above Chelyabinsk, Russia, with 20-30 times the energy of the Hiroshima atomic bomb. Photo via Alex Alishevskikh/ Flickr.

Asteroids are the leftover remnants of the birth of the planets in the solar system, and many are the shattered fragments of these diminutive proto-planets that never made it to maturity.

Tom Jones, Ph.D., veteran astronaut and planetary scientist, and Asteroid Day Expert Panel member, said:

Asteroid exploration missions tell us about the birth of our own planet and reveal how asteroids can serve astronauts as stepping stones to Mars.

Each asteroid is an individual with its own story to tell. And that’s what Asteroid Day is all about: bringing those stories to the widest audience possible.

Ruy Pinto, Chief Technology Officer at SES, said:

Space and science have been an endless source of inspiration for SES! This is one of the reasons why we and our partners continue to do extraordinary things in space to deliver amazing experiences everywhere on earth.

Through satellite broadcasting, we are able to reach millions of TV households and this enables us to unite people around science, space, and technology topics.

Mark Serres, the CEO of the Luxembourg Space Agency, said:

The valuable expertise of SES and BCE play a central role in making Asteroid Day an international success and enabling us to have a global conversation about space, space resources, and asteroids in these COVID-19 times.

Such studies can also protect our planet. European Space Agency (ESA) Director General Jan Wörner noted:

An asteroid impact is a natural disaster we might be able to avoid if we see one coming soon enough

Space scene with many floating rocks illuminated with light from distant sun.

Image via AsteroidDay.org.

Join Asteroid Day Live Digital from Luxembourg to celebrate the solar system’s magnificent debris.

Asteroid Day Live Digital from Luxembourg is a five-hour program with panel discussions including:

Panel hosts include Sarah Cruddas, Alan Boyle, Lisa Burke, Sabinije von Gaffke, and Stuart Clark. The panel summary descriptions can be found here.

In the week leading up to Asteroid Day, the European Space Agency will produce several Asteroid Day programs in French, Spanish, Dutch, German, and Italian including asteroid experts and special guests discussing European planetary defense and asteroid-related activities aimed at general audiences in those countries, and ESA debuts an English segment on June 30 as part of Asteroid Day LIVE from Luxembourg.

In addition to the ESA programs, there are independent online talks taking place worldwide as well. “Stones Fallen From the Sky: The Birth of the Science of Asteroids and Meteorites” will come from Spain, and Asteroid Day Chile has organized for 20+ national institutions to give talks, workshops for children, and audiovisual segments. These will be broadcast on Facebook Live and YouTube simultaneously on June 29 and 30. These and more can be found online at AsteroidDay.org; only a limited number of independent events are possible this year due to Covid-19.


The story of Asteroid Day
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Bottom line: The 6th annual Asteroid Day will be held as a digital event on June 30, 2020. It’ll feature presentations with experts, panel discussions, and question-and-answer periods.

Via AsteroidDay.org

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