DIX Planetary Science Seminar
Abstract: Thermal infrared observations are an ideal tool for studying the small bodies of the Solar system. Not only are asteroids some of the brightest objects in the sky at thermal wavelengths, but measurements of their brightness allow us to directly constrain their sizes. These capabilities allowed the NEOWISE mission, during its seven month cryogenic phase, to discover over 30,000 new objects and measure sizes and albedos for over 130,000 asteroids. I will highlight some of the results of the original NEOWISE survey, discuss its continued output during the post-cryo Reactivation mission, and describe how we are taking the lessons learned from NEOWISE to design the next generation asteroid survey mission: NEO Surveyor.