NASA Joins Forces with SpaceX to Launch Asteroid Mission

13 Oct 2023

NASA achieved the first milestone in asteroid exploration as it received samples from the surface of asteroid Bennu. To further explore deep space, NASA has collaborated with the private space agency SpaceX. The space agencies have planned to launch the deep space exploration mission to asteroid Psyche on October 12, 2023.

The NASA-SpaceX Deal

NASA awarded a contract to SpaceX to launch the Falcon Heavy rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA is using customized advanced space components and spacecraft to study the metallic nature of asteroid Psyche.

The Psyche spacecraft integrates a multispectral imager to provide high-resolution images, neutron spectrometer to study the asteroid's composition, and magnetometer to measure the magnetic field and gamma ray

The spacecraft will also employ advanced radio science to study and measure the gravity field of the interior structure of asteroid Psyche. Moreover, the deep space optical communication technology will test communications using laser beams in initial demonstrations.

Why Asteroid Psyche?

Planetary researchers from Arizona State University say that Psyche is an asteroid with rich metal deposits. This has been speculated based on its density and the light it reflects. The surface of Psyche may contain historic samples from the core.

Through sample collection from the Psyche, NASA will survey the metallic components in the composition of the surface sample and determine how Earth’s core and other terrestrial planets were formed.

When will it Reach Psyche?

NASA and SpaceX’s collaborative asteroid Psyche Mission is set to reach Psyche in the summer of 2029. It will orbit the asteroid for 26 months. The spacecraft will be almost 40 miles above the lowest point of the asteroid.

The Road Ahead for Deep Space Exploration

Advancing deep space technologies will provide important data on asteroids in the future, such as detailed imaging of surface and geology, measurements of size, shape, and orbital positions, spectral data of asteroid surface materials, magnetic and gravity fields, and potential availability of metals and minerals. 

Moreover, with increasing private-public collaborations such as NASA and SpaceX, deep space explorations will pick up a faster pace, discovering the deeper secrets of the cosmic world.

Interested to know more about the growing technologies in your industry vertical? Get the latest market studies and insights from BIS Research. Connect with us at [email protected] to learn and understand more.


Twitter Feeds