NASA Takes To Reddit To Spur ‘Grand’ Ideas For Finding Asteroids

Cory Bennett | FedScoop | June 25, 2013

NASA is going to put a man on an asteroid in the next dozen years, and, like Uncle Sam, it wants you to help.

Mason Peck, chief technologist of the agency with a long tradition of crowdsourcing and public engagement, took to Reddit on Tuesday afternoon for his second “Ask Me Anything” session in as many months.

Although he dodged some questions — “Do you think the suit and tie was a wise choice for this audience?” and “What did Apollo 17 see over the moon? I know NASA will never tell the public they have made contact with other life. So what’s the explanation you guys are sticking with?” — Peck did outline how the U.S. is planning to deflect potentially catastrophic asteroids, and how and why the U.S. is going to put an asteroid into the moon’s orbit and then land humans on it.

“We’ll visit an asteroid by 2025 to teach ourselves how to visit Mars a decade later,” Peck declared, adding if a suitable asteroid is found soon, a spacecraft could be there as early as 2021.