CASTAway: An asteroid main belt tour and survey

Bowles, N.E.; Snodgrass, C.; Gibbings, A.; Sanchez, J.P.; Arnold, J.A.; Eccleston, P.; Andert, T.; Probst, A.; Naletto, G.; Vandaele, A.C.; de Leon, J.; Nathues, A.; Thomas, I.R.; Thomas, Nicolas; Jorda, L.; Da Deppo, V.; Haack, H.; Green, S.F.; Carry, B.; Donaldson Hanna, K.L.; ... (2018). CASTAway: An asteroid main belt tour and survey. Advances in space research, 62(8), pp. 1998-2025. Elsevier 10.1016/j.asr.2017.10.021

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CASTAway is a mission concept to explore our Solar System’s main asteroid belt. Asteroids and comets provide a window into the formation and evolution of our Solar System and the composition of these objects can be inferred from space-based remote sensing using spectroscopic techniques. Variations in composition across the asteroid populations provide a tracer for the dynamical evolution of the Solar System. The mission combines a long-range (point source) telescopic survey of over 10,000 objects, targeted close encounters with 10–20 asteroids and serendipitous searches to constrain the distribution of smaller (e.g. 10 m) size objects into a single concept. With a carefully targeted trajectory that loops through the asteroid belt, CASTAway would provide a comprehensive survey of the main belt at multiple scales. The scientific payload comprises a 50 cm diameter telescope that includes an integrated low-resolution (R = 30–100) spectrometer and visible context imager, a thermal (e.g. 6–16 μm) imager for use during the flybys, and modified star tracker cameras to detect small (~10 m) asteroids. The CASTAway spacecraft and payload have high levels of technology readiness and are designed to fit within the programmatic and cost caps for a European Space Agency medium class mission, while delivering a significant increase in knowledge of our Solar System.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Space Research and Planetary Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Thomas, Nicolas

Subjects:

500 Science > 520 Astronomy
600 Technology > 620 Engineering

ISSN:

0273-1177

Publisher:

Elsevier

Language:

English

Submitter:

Dora Ursula Zimmerer

Date Deposited:

10 Apr 2018 16:06

Last Modified:

21 Sep 2018 01:30

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.asr.2017.10.021

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.107788

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/107788

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