This area will cover relevant news of the threat to the planet from Near Earth Objects (NEOs) including concepts and designs for mitigation. All opinions are those of the author.

24 February 2009

Overview of ROSETTA Flyby of Asteroid 2867 Steins

Summary document of the ROSETTA mission's flyby of asteroid asteroid 2867 Steins. From the bulletin...

Because Rosetta crosses the main asteroid belt twice during its long cruise, the mission was also given secondary scientific objectives: the flybys of asteroids Steins and Lutetia (2010). The spacecraft is now on its fourth orbit around the Sun and crossed the asteroid belt for the first time in September 2008. On 5 September, Rosetta passed asteroid 2867 Steins at a distance of about 800 km and at relative velocity of 8.6 km/s.

Closest approach [to asteroid Steins] was 802.6 km, occurring only four seconds later than the time estimated for planning purposes.

Link: THE FIRST EUROPEAN ASTEROID ‘FLYBY’: Rosetta operations for the flyby of asteroid 2867 Steins, Sylvain Lodiot et al (PDF)

Link: ESA Bulletin

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