I appreciate it. Cathy, before we go I have to ask you. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) will manage the project. Two years later, the Psyche spacecraft will take off for the asteroid belt to orbit an asteroid composed of metal. So we’ll be able to sample Trojans in both locations. Lucy is headed to a cluster of asteroids called Trojans. So right now we’re focusing on the prime mission and encountering these six Trojan asteroids, but we’ve looked ahead and saw that we can encounter other objects, including asteroids, in a potential extended mission that we would apply to NASA for permission to do, but that’s many years from now. The third selection, NEOCam will head for Earth's L1 Lagrange point 1 million km (621,000 miles) sunward. So what’s unique about a Trojan asteroid? Then Lucy will head to Jupiter's L4 (ahead) point to explore four worlds before reaching its final destination: binary Trojan 617 Patroclus/Menoetius in March 2033 located at the L5 (behind) point.
And so we’re just going to be orbiting too. Congress granted NASA $175 million dollars.
So they all are going around a big circle around the sun that’s five times more distant than the distance between the Earth and the sun. The two are part of NASA's Discovery program, and were selected from five finalists, which also included the Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble gases, Chemistry and Imaging (DAVINCI) and the Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR, Topography, and Spectroscopy mission (VERITAS) spacecraft. And that’s because we want to be able to get the density of all of them, and the small one you have to get closer so that you can feel that gravitational pull. We learned that when we went to Pluto. The Lucy Mission NASA has selected a mission that will perform the first reconnaissance of the Trojans, a population of primitive asteroids orbiting in tandem with Jupiter. Learn more about Lucy and Psyche at http://go.nasa.gov/2iQdwFh Credit: NASA. Alexa Lim is a producer for Science Friday. We don’t know. JOHN DANKOWSKY: Lindy, how about you? JOHN DANKOWSKY: This is Science Friday. JOHN DANKOWSKY: Wow. NEOCam is expected to reveal ten times the asteroids currently known. We think it had a lot of destructive collisions in the high speed high energy early solar system that just broke all the rock off the outside, leaving the core available for us to see. I can’t get to a caller, though he’s wondering, can we guess how large the protoplanet was that this might be the core of? I’m just going to get to say the sad thing first, which is we have absolutely no way to bring this material back right now. NASA recently announced plans for two different missions to investigate asteroids, those rocky remnants of the solar system. Thank you, Cathy. “We'll learn what elements early cores contributed to growing planets,” says Lindy Elkins-Tanton (Lucy Principal Investigator, Arizona State University).
What types of materials are on these asteroids that could potentially be applicable here on Earth? LINDY ELKINS-TANTON: Thanks an awful lot. Lucy is scheduled to launch in October 2021 and will arrive at its first destination, a main belt asteroid, in 2025. Lindy Elkins-Tanton is the Principal Investigator of NASA’s Psyche Mission and director of the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. Lindy Elkins-Tanton of Arizona State University is the principal investigator who proposed this mission for NASA's Discovery Program. Lucy and Psyche were final selections from 27 initial submissions given to NASA in 2014. Both of these missions are missions of exploration. TRIAL OFFER So they are in a very different location than most asteroids, and we believe that they are the remnants from a solar system formation.
So when you learn about the solar system in school, you learn Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, and there’s an asteroid belt, Jupiter, and typically gets glossed over that there are other kinds of asteroids as well. First of all, what do you want to learn at each of these stops, but also love to know how you’re going to weave in through all these asteroids.
“This is a unique opportunity,” said Harold F Levison, principal investigator of the Lucy mission from the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado. You don’t really know at all what you’re going to encounter until you get there. My question was concerning the economic impact of these missions. We’ve never seen objects had this up close and seen what their surfaces look like. I’m John Dankosky. CATHY OLKIN: I am so excited to work with our partners and build a spacecraft and explore these new worlds. Copyright ©2020 AAS Sky Publishing LLC.
Sky & Telescope is part of AAS Sky Publishing, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of the American Astronomical Society. “This is a unique opportunity,” said Harold F. Levison, (Southwest Research Institute) in a recent press release. Low-cost Discovery missions are capped at $450 million dollars, not including the launch vehicle. Did it ever create its own magnetic dynamo, like the Earth's core does today? The two unmanned missions, Lucy and Psyche, will launch in 2021 and 2023 respectively and were chosen from five finalists. Ira Flatow is away. All rights reserved. Bruce in Charleston, South Carolina.
The spacecraft will hone in on six objects behind Jupiter which may be captured asteroids, comets or other objects from the very distant reaches of the solar system.
So the whole process is exciting to me. The missions, known as Lucy and Psyche, were chosen from five finalists and will proceed to mission formulation, with the goal of launching in 2021 and 2023, respectively. And also to the guests, thanks for being on today. CATHY OLKIN: Yeah, so it’s named after Lucy because the Lucy fossil transformed our understanding of hominid evolution just like the Lucy mission proposes to transform our understanding of solar system formation and evolution. NASA's Near Earth Object Camera (NEOCam) also got the go-ahead. “This is an opportunity to explore a new type of world – not one of rock or ice, but of metal,” said Psyche principal investigator Lindy Elkins-Tanton of Arizona State University in Tempe. Lucy, like the human fossil for which it is named, will revolutionize the understanding of our origins.”. And amazingly Psyche is the only object like this, a small metal world, in our solar system. En route to Jupiter's orbit, in April 2025, Lucy will visit the main belt asteroid 52246 Donaldjohanson (named after the fossil Lucy's discoverer). About six years ago we started wondering what would be the best place to go in the solar system to understand more about the very beginning of planet formation, this process called differentiation, when melting occurred and the heavy metal sank to the middle of planets, like our Earth core is metal. And they contain clues about the conditions of the early solar system and how the planets were formed and moved amongst one another. Right now that’s technology that’s in our future. LINDY ELKINS-TANTON: Well, of course. JOHN DANKOWSKY: Hi, Steven. Do you have some guesses as to what these various asteroids are going to look like? A lot of people have asteroid questions, like Steven in Naples, Florida. So Lindy, now your mission is headed to a single asteroid called Psyche.
Researchers have pushed for a mission like 16 Psyche for some time.
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