Friday, March 26, 2010

This portends (thing)s to soon come...

Pentagon to deny Scientists access to meteors data

There was an unofficial arrangement between the Pentagon and top U.S. scientists: the Pentagon's missile-launch and nuclear-blast detection satellites are also great for spotting meteors as they flame out in the Earth's atmosphere, and the Pentagon shared the latter information with scientists; the Pentagon says it will no longer do so

This cannot be good news: A new rule by the U.S. Department of Defense will deny U.S. top scientific the ability to check out data from classified satellites on incoming meteors hurtling toward earth.

Nature’s Geoff Brumfiel reports that the Pentagon ended an informal arrangement with astronomers that gave the scientists access to data from the Defense Support Programsatellite network, part of the Pentagon’s early-warning system. Nathan Hodge writes that these satellites can detect missile launches or atmospheric nuclear blasts, but they are also great for spotting meteors as they flame out in the Earth’s atmosphere.

According to Brumfiel, the military provided some data to astronomers, often through “anonymous, tersely worded e-mail[s] describing the coordinates, altitude and size of a fireball.”

The question then becomes WHAT does the Pentagon NOT want US-The American People to know?

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