NASA Funding

ATLAS construction and operations are funded by grants 80NSSC18K0284 and 80NSSC18K1575 under the NASA Planetary Defense Office and Near Earth Objects Observations program (NEOO).  The NEOO program aims to discover all potentially hazardous asteroids down to ~100 meters in diameter.  NEOO seeks investigations that promise a sustained, productive search for NEOs and/or obtain follow-up observations of sufficient astrometric precision to allow the accurate prediction of the trajectories of all discovered objects.  In addition to this goal, the NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate and Planetary Science Division have established an interest for the NEOO Program to search for Near-Earth Asteroid (NEA) targets that provide Human Spaceflight accessible and/or robotic mission destinations.

ATLAS video:

John Tonry descibes his successful efforts to persuade NASA to fund ATLAS