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Shoemaker Near-Earth Object Grant Program


2014 Shoemaker NEO Grant Call for Proposals

The current round's Call for Proposals is now available. For more information see How to Submit a Proposal for submission details, the rest of this section and this blog for additional background. The current round of proposals is due February 2, 2015.


To find and track near-Earth objects (NEOs) to determine which -- if any -- pose a threat to our world, The Planetary Society has established the Gene Shoemaker Near Earth Object Grants. Shoemaker grants are awarded to amateur observers, observers in developing countries, and professional astronomers who, with seed funding, can greatly increase their programs' contributions to NEO research.

Grant recipients have played critical roles in tracking small asteroids that were discovered by major asteroid survey programs, and providing the crucial follow-up observations to determine precise orbits for these objects. They have also contributed NEO discoveries and characterizations of the properties of NEOs. Through these observations and others, supported by Society members and their donations, the Society is playing an active role in helping to ‘retire’ some of the risk of impact from NEOs and to reveal the properties of these interesting and valuable targets for future exploration.

The program honors pioneering planetary geologist Gene Shoemaker, who did so much to help us understand the process of impact cratering on the planets and the nature of the NEO population, and seeks to assist amateur observers, observers in developing countries, and under-funded professional observers contributing to vital NEO research.

Since founding the grant program in 1997, The Planetary Society has awarded 43 Shoemaker NEO grants totaling about $270,000 to observers from 16 different countries on 5 continents. You can follow the efforts of past grant recipients through their contributions to the Planetary Society Blog and the Planetary Radio podcast


2013 Shoemaker NEO Grant Recipients

There were 16 proposers from 10 countries with five winners (of those, 3 are previous Shoemaker NEO winners) receiving $34,307!

Find out who is on the list »


Project Updates

Sky survey grant helps lead to a space science career

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2015/01/16 01:15 CST

Quan-Zhi Ye was an 18 year-old college student and the principal investigator of the Lulin Sky Survey when he won a 2007 Shoemaker NEO grant. He's now a Ph.D. candidate and provides an update on his work in meteor studies.

Read More »

2007 Shoemaker Grant Still Yielding Asteroid Science

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2015/01/06 05:15 CST

Telescope purchased in 2007 with the support of a Shoemaker grant is still in service and has worked on over 100 near-Earth asteroids over its 8 years of operation.

Read More »

New camera improves a California near-Earth asteroid program

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2014/12/29 04:40 CST

A new camera is improving the efficiency of the Near-Earth Asteroid Program at the Center for Solar System Studies. This update from Shoemaker NEO Grant winner Bob Stephens reveals amazing recent progress using his 2013 Planetary Society grant.

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Calling Serious Asteroid Hunters

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2014/11/24 10:00 CST

I am happy to announce a new call for proposals for The Planetary Society’s Gene Shoemaker Near Earth Object (NEO) grant program. Proposals are due Feb. 2, 2015.

Read More »

Hunting Binary Asteroids

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2014/11/07 05:31 CST

Thanks to The Planetary Society’s Shoemaker NEO Grant program, a new telescope has been brought to bear focusing on searching for and understanding the properties of binary asteroid systems.

Read More »

Shining Up A Telescope

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2014/03/21 11:50 CDT

A 0.81m telescope in northern Italy is well on its way to being wide eyed and shiny thanks to a 2013 Planetary Society Shoemaker NEO Grant, which will enable it to make better near Earth object observations to help protect our planet from asteroid impact.

Read More »

Asteroid Telescope First Light

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2013/08/16 03:04 CDT | 5 comments

Using a Shoemaker NEO Grant a new telescope is operating in Illinois to do asteroid tracking.

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Determining Near Earth Asteroids’ Properties from the California Desert

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2013/08/05 05:04 CDT | 2 comments

Shoemaker NEO Grant winner Bob Stephens specializes in lightcurves of near Earth asteroids to determine their physical properties. Here is an update on recent progress using his 2013 Planetary Society grant. This is the first in a series of updates on Shoemaker NEO Grant winners.

Read More »

Found a Killer Asteroid? Who Ya Gonna Call?

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2013/07/08 04:19 CDT

Astronomer Timothy Spahr directs the Minor Planet Center, the global clearinghouse for asteroids, comets and other relatively small objects in the solar system, including moons. He also coordinates the Society's Shoemaker NEO grant program.

Read More »

Planetary Society Hangout: LaserBees, Asteroids, and Planet Vacuums

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2013/06/13 12:39 CDT | 1 comment

We check in with Dr. Bruce Betts, our Director of Projects, on the latest from our current programs funded by our members.

Read More »

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More on NEO Grants

The Exciting Year Ahead on the Final Frontier

01/06/2015 | 28:50

Guests

The Planetary Society’s experts look forward to a great year of firsts in the solar system and beyond.

More Info & Listen »

Intro Astronomy 2014. Class 7: Near Earth Asteroids, Jupiter System

Guests

  • Timothy Spahr, Director, Minor Planet Center, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Lecture 7 of Dr. Bruce Betts' 2014 online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers the near Earth asteroid threat to Earth (including statistics, past impacts, and information on the Chelyabinsk fireball), introduces the Jupiter system, and includes an interview with Tim Spahr, Director of the Minor Planet Center. Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.

Watch »

2013 Thank You Message From Bill Nye and the Planetary Society

Our members and supporters made us your place in space for 2013. CEO Bill Nye the Science Guy, our volunteers, project leaders and staff take this opportunity to share their gratitude.

Watch »

Tim Spahr of the Minor Planet Center

07/08/2013 | 28:50

Guests

  • Timothy Spahr, Director, Minor Planet Center, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

There’s a place to go when you find a space rock headed our way, or headed any which way. Tim Spahr directs the Minor Planet Center, the global clearinghouse for all information about asteroids, comets and other relatively small bodies like moons.

More Info & Listen »

Saving Earth: Asteroid Emergency Tabletop Exercise at the 2013 PDC

05/06/2013 | 41:37

Guests

The last installment of our Planetary Defense Conference coverage makes a deep impact as hundreds of attendees participate in an asteroid mitigation exercise. You’ll hear from astronauts Ed Lu and Rusty Schweikart, Near Earth Object expert Don Yeomans, Cathy Plesko of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and many more.

More Info & Listen »

Kindred Spirits: Alison Gibbings and Carolyn Shoemaker at the Planetary Defense Conference

04/29/2013 | 28:50

Guests

Our special coverage of the PDC continues with two planetary scientists separated by almost 60 years in age, but with similar dedication and enthusiasm for saving the planet.

More Info & Listen »


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