Scout: You can pet him, Mr. Arthur. He's asleep.

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Scout: You can pet him, Mr. Arthur. He's asleep.

Post by neufer » Sat Jul 14, 2018 2:42 am wrote:
Click to play embedded YouTube video.
Click to play embedded YouTube video.
:arrow: NASA's NEA Scout spacecraft performed a full-scale
solar sail deployment test on June 28, 2018.

<<The Near-Earth Asteroid Scout (NEA Scout) is a planned mission by NASA to develop a controllable low-cost CubeSat solar sail spacecraft capable of encountering near-Earth asteroids (NEA). The NEA Scout will be one of 13 CubeSats to be carried with the Orion EM-1 mission into a heliocentric orbit in cis-lunar space on the maiden flight of the Space Launch System (SLS) scheduled to launch in 2019. The most likely target for the mission is 1991 VG, but this may change based on launch date or other factors.

After deployment in cislunar space, NEA Scout will deploy its solar panels and antenna. Following a lunar flyby, the solar sail will deploy and spacecraft checkout will begin. NEA Scout will then perform a series of lunar flybys to achieve optimum departure trajectory before beginning its 2.0 - 2.5 year-long cruise to the 1991VG asteroid

Observations will be achieved using a CubeSat performing a slow close (~10 km) flyby, equipped with a high resolution science-grade monochromatic camera to measure the physical properties of a near-Earth object. The measurements to be addressed include target's accurate positioning (position and prediction), rotation rate and pole position, mass, density, mapping of particles and debris field in target vicinity, albedo and asteroid spectral type, surface morphologies and properties, and regolith properties.

Once the flyby is complete, and if the system is still fully functioning, an extended mission will be contemplated, perhaps leading to the reconnaissance of another asteroid or a re-flyby of 1991VG several months later.>>
Art Neuendorffer