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Shoemaker Near-Earth Object Grant Program


2015 Shoemaker NEO Grant Recipients

There were 19 proposers with six winners receiving $53,250!

Find out who is on the list


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.

Support this project


Since founding the grant program in 1997, The Planetary Society has awarded 49 Shoemaker NEO grants totaling about $323,000 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


Project Updates

Updates on Shoemaker NEO Grant Recipients

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2010/03/18 12:00 CDT

Our past Shoemaker NEO grant recipients have once again shown themselves to be a hardworking and enterprising group.

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Propose for a Shoemaker Near Earth Object Grant

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/03/17 01:39 CDT

Are you a serious amateur astronomer who enjoys the challenge of following up on the discoveries of faint near-Earth objects?

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Planetary Society Researcher Max Rocca Discovers Largest Impact Crater in South America

Posted by Amir Alexander on 2010/02/13 12:00 CST

It was January of 2004 when the elegant curve of the Vichada first caught the attention of geologist Max Rocca of Buenos Aires. Could the course of the river have been shaped by the circular outlines of an impact crater? Rocca decided to find out.

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WISE has found its first comet, P/2010 B2 (WISE)

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/02/08 04:50 CST

Having discovered its first asteroid on January 12, Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has now officially discovered its first comet, P/2010 B2 (WISE).

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Apophis is less scary than it used to be

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2009/10/07 04:15 CDT

Based on analyses of previously unstudied telescopic data, NASA scientists have released new predictions for the path of the 300-meter-diameter asteroid Apophis.

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More from the Planetary Defense Conference: Shoemaker Grant Winners

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2009/04/27 06:54 CDT

More from the Planetary Defense Conference: Shoemaker Grant Winners

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Updates on the 2007 Shoemaker NEO Grant Recipients

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2009/04/27 12:00 CDT

Our 2007 Shoemaker NEO Grant winners have been extremely busy over the past two years. Take for example Quanzhi Ye of Guangzhou, China: He was only 18 when he received the award but already the principal investigator of the sky survey at the Lulin Observatory in Taiwan.

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More on NEO Grants

Intro Astronomy 2016. Class 7: Asteroids and the Asteroid Threat

Lecture 7 of Dr. Bruce Betts' 2016 online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers asteroids and the near Earth asteroid threat to Earth (including statistics, past impacts, and information on the Chelyabinsk fireball). Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.

Watch »

Planetary Radio Extra: Planetary Society Experts 2015 Review

01/05/2016 | 61:40

Guests

  • Bruce Betts, Director of Science and Technology, The Planetary Society
  • Jason Davis, Digital Editor, The Planetary Society
  • Casey Dreier, Director of Space Policy, The Planetary Society
  • Emily Lakdawalla, Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist, The Planetary Society

Bruce Betts, Jason Davis, Casey Dreier and Emily Lakdawalla gather with Mat Kaplan for a fascinating and informative Planetary Radio Extra year-in-review roundtable discussion.

More Info & Listen »

Saving the Planet at the Planetary Defense Conference

04/21/2015 | 28:50

Guests

  • William Ailor, Distinguished Engineer, The Aerospace Corporation
  • Fabrizio Bernardi, Chief Executive Officer, SpaceDyS
  • Paul Chodas, Manager, NASA NEO Program Office, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Lindley Johnson, Planetary Defense Officer, NASA
  • Detlef Koschny, Co-Manager, Near-Earth Object Segment of the Space Situational Awareness Programme (SSA-NEO), ESA/ESTEC
  • Amy Mainzer, NEOWISE Principal Investigator, Jet Propulsion Lab

Planetary Radio Live was the only public event at the just-completed Planetary Defense Conference in Italy. Join us for excerpts from an all-star celebration of worldwide efforts to find, track, characterize and eventually deflect killer Near-Earth Objects.

More Info & Listen »

Intro Astronomy 2015. Class 7: Near Earth Asteroids, Jupiter System

Lecture 7 of Dr. Bruce Betts' 2015 online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers asteroid Ceres, the near Earth asteroid threat to Earth (including statistics, past impacts, and information on the Chelyabinsk fireball), and introduces the Jupiter system. Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.

Watch »

The Exciting Year Ahead on the Final Frontier

01/06/2015 | 28:50

Guests

  • Bruce Betts, Director of Science and Technology, The Planetary Society
  • Jason Davis, Digital Editor, The Planetary Society
  • Casey Dreier, Director of Space Policy, The Planetary Society
  • Emily Lakdawalla, Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist, The Planetary Society
  • Bill Nye, Chief Executive Officer

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 »


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