User:Jscotti

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I am a Planetary Scientist at the University of Arizona. I study asteroids (especially Near-Earth Asteroids, the ones which might hit Earth again someday) and comets. My research interests besides discovery of asteroids and comets is in the behavior of comets and the dynamics of bodies in the solar system, particularly the outer solar system (Centaur objects, comets, and Trans-Neptunian objects).

As a scientist, I am also a skeptic and find pseudoscientific nonsense offensive. I have created my own moonlanding hoax debunking page for example and do not take the wild claims of the hoaxers lightly. I have studied all aspects of the Apollo program including the science done on the Moon and how the spacecraft were built and flown. The nitty-gritty details are most fascinating to me - the hows and whys of the spacecraft especially. I also have an interest in 3D photography and there are a lot of images taken on the moon that allow the generation of 3D anaglyph images.

I am also interested in space art (member IAAA), photography, computers, geocaching, hiking, golf, softball, astronomy, flight simulation and many more areas.....

If you've heard of me before, it may be because I have discovered a lot of Near-Earth asteroids, serveral of which have made close approaches to Earth or will in the future. The most well known of those is 1997 XF11 which I discovered in December 1997 and in March of 1998, it was predicted to make a close approach to Earth in October 2028 which briefly was thought to have a decent chance of an impact. It made the national news and kept me busy for a day or two before observations from 1990 were found and the orbit improved, proving that an impact would not happen in 2028. I also held the record from December 1994 until the fall of 2003 for having discovered the object which had the closest observed approach to Earth (105,000 kilometers for 1994 XM1) outside of the atmosphere. One other claim to fame was that I was lucky enough to be observing the night that Carolyn Shoemaker along with her husband Gene Shoemaker and David Levy discovered comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 which impacted Jupiter in July 1994. They called me from Mt. Palomar while I was at the Spacewatch telescope on Kitt Peak in order to arrange to try and confirm the object which I did on 1993 March 26.

Here are a few links to my webpages.