NASA’s latest mission is heading to the Trojan asteroids to help us answer some of the biggest questions about the origin of our solar system.
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As of August 2020, NASA officially approved the construction of its asteroid hunting spacecraft named Lucy.
Lucy will be the first space mission in history to be launched to so many different destinations in independent orbits around our sun. The spacecraft will complete a 12-year journey visiting eight different asteroids in two large asteroid clouds near Jupiter known as the Trojan asteroids.
Although Lucy won’t be landing on any of the asteroids, the spacecraft will be mapping their surface geology, color, composition, densities, and it will even be keeping a look out for surprising mini satellites or rings that the asteroids could be pulling in.
Using an extensive suite of advanced instruments, Lucy will revolutionize our knowledge of planetary origins and the formation of the solar system.
Find out more about asteroid hunting Lucy in this Countdown to Launch.
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SwRI-LED LUCY MISSION ONE STEP CLOSER TO THE TROJAN ASTEROIDS
"NASA’s Lucy mission, led by Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), has achieved an important milestone by passing its System Integration Review and clearing the way for spacecraft assembly."
Lucy: The First Mission to the Trojan Asteroids
"Time capsules from the birth of our Solar System more than 4 billion years ago, the swarms of Trojan asteroids associated with Jupiter are thought to be remnants of the primordial material that formed the outer planets."
Lucy: Surveying the Diversity of the Trojan Asteroids
"Lucy will be the first space mission to explore a population of small bodies known as the Trojans."
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