Session

Pre-Conference Workshop Session III: Instruments/Science I

Location

Utah State University, Logan, UT

Abstract

In the frame of the Planetary Defense program, NASA developed the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission and the Italian Space Agency joined the effort. DART’s spacecraft will act as a kinetic impactor by deliberately crashing into the moonlet of Didymos binary system (i.e. Didymos-B) while the effects of the impact will be observed by a small satellite, the Light Italian CubeSat for Imaging of Asteroid (LICIACube) and ground-based telescopes. LICIACube, an Italian Space Agency (ASI) mission, will fly with a relative velocity of approximately 6.5 km/s and it will document the effects of the impact, the crater and the evolution of the plume generated by the collision. LICIACube will have to maintain the asteroid's pointing at an angular speed of approximately 10 deg/s to fly-by the asteroid close to the Didymos-B surface. The images acquired by LICIACube will be processed onboard through the autonomous navigation algorithm to identify the asteroid system and control the satellite attitude. They will also help the scientific community and provide feedback to the Planetary Defense program, pioneered by the Space Agencies. This deep-space mission is based on a small scale but highly technological platform, whose development is involving both the Italian technical and scientific community.

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Aug 1st, 12:00 AM

LICIACube on DART Mission: An Asteroid Impact Captured by Italian Small Satellite Technology

Utah State University, Logan, UT

In the frame of the Planetary Defense program, NASA developed the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission and the Italian Space Agency joined the effort. DART’s spacecraft will act as a kinetic impactor by deliberately crashing into the moonlet of Didymos binary system (i.e. Didymos-B) while the effects of the impact will be observed by a small satellite, the Light Italian CubeSat for Imaging of Asteroid (LICIACube) and ground-based telescopes. LICIACube, an Italian Space Agency (ASI) mission, will fly with a relative velocity of approximately 6.5 km/s and it will document the effects of the impact, the crater and the evolution of the plume generated by the collision. LICIACube will have to maintain the asteroid's pointing at an angular speed of approximately 10 deg/s to fly-by the asteroid close to the Didymos-B surface. The images acquired by LICIACube will be processed onboard through the autonomous navigation algorithm to identify the asteroid system and control the satellite attitude. They will also help the scientific community and provide feedback to the Planetary Defense program, pioneered by the Space Agencies. This deep-space mission is based on a small scale but highly technological platform, whose development is involving both the Italian technical and scientific community.