A second study for NASA´s manned asteroid mission?

by | May 16, 2008 | NASA | 0 comments

According to NASA Ames´s David Korsmeyer the space agency´s leadership has expressed interest in further studies of a manned mission to an asteroid that swings by Earth in the 2020s timeframe

orion neoW445.JPG

orion neo W445.JPG

The study would be to update the original work following the more detailed work that has been done on the Ares launchers and Orion since. The original study used the Orion 604, the last NASA-only design and the CEV is now at design “607 or 608”

neo launchersW445.JPG

And after a year of briefing various people the next presentation will be given to the US National Research Council on 9 June

The two astronauts that would go, between the Orion and LSAM Korsmeyer said that the habitable volume would be similar to Russia’s first Salyut and of the radiation issues he said: “We have no idea what that really does being outside the magnetosphere.”

neo lsam missionW445.JPG

Like the original study the objects of interest are 540m (1,770ft) wide asteroids. Scientists believe there could be 100,000 asteroids out there larger than 140m wide. To reach them will require a 4-7km/s delta-V for Orion from LEO orbit. Past work has identified 84 candidates but the NEO mission capability is not expected until the 2020 timeframe

The study looked at four different launch options with two pictured here. The four are, an Orion launched by Ares V; a Moon mission type dual launch with Ares V launching the EDS and a prototype Altair and Ares I lofting Orion; an Ares IV launching an Orion; and in another dual launch situation a Ares I launching Orion while an EELV launches a Centaur upper stage that would dock with Orion and push the CEV out to the NEO

neo missionW445.JPG

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