The autonomous asteroid mapping mission "Bering"

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Asteroids are believed to be the remnants of the material from which the Solar System formed. This view is supported by the way the predominating asteroid type changes with increasing distance from the Sun within the asteroid belt. High-speed collisions between asteroids are gradually resulting in their break-up. The size distribution of kilometer-sized asteroids implies that the presently undetected population of sub-kilometer asteroids far outnumber the known larger objects. Sub-kilometer asteroids are expected to provide unique insight into the evolution of the asteroid belt and to the meteorite-asteroid connection. We propose a space mission to detect and characterize sub-kilometer asteroids between Jupiter and Venus. The mission is named "Bering" after the famous navigator and explorer Vitus Bering. A key feature of the mission is an advanced payload package, providing full on board autonomy of both object detection and tracking, which is required in order to study fast moving objects in deep space. The autonomy has the added advantage of reducing the cost of running the mission to a minimum, thus enabling science to focus on the main objectives.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Astronautica
Issue number8-11
Pages (from-to)966-973
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2006

    Research areas

  • Ephermerides, Instrumentation, detectors, spectrographs, Methods, observational, Minor planets, asteroids, Space vehicles, instruments

ID: 208855124