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NEOWISE: New Data Release, Implications

24 Apr 2018, 12:54 UTC
NEOWISE: New Data Release, Implications NASA/JPL-Caltech

The Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has been featured often in these pages, usually in terms of brown dwarfs and the possibility of uncovering a small star or brown dwarf closer than Proxima Centauri. But while we still have no evidence of such, we do have abundant data on brown dwarfs, as well as a useful compendium of objects that come close to the Earth.

For WISE, launched in 2009 and placed into hibernation in 2011 upon completion of its primary mission, was reactivated in 2013 as NEOWISE. The goal is now the observation of asteroids and comets both near and far by way of characterizing their size and composition.

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