Asteroid Visitor, Asteroid Orbiter, Asteroid Lander: 20 Years Since the Launch of NEAR Shoemaker

Asteroid 433 Eros, visited by the Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR)-Shoemaker during 1998-2001. Photo Credit: NASA

Twenty years ago, today, on 17 February 1996, NASA’s Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR)—a name later adjusted to honor the planetary scientist Gene Shoemaker—rocketed away from Launch Complex (LC)-17B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., aboard a venerable […]

How to Target an Asteroid

This spectacular image of comet Tempel 1 was taken 67 seconds after it obliterated Deep Impact’s impactor spacecraft. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD

Like many of his colleagues at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., Shyam Bhaskaran is working a lot with asteroids these days. And also like many of his colleagues, the deep space […]

The Long and Storied Path to Human Asteroid Exploration

This June 1978 artist’s concept shows a space solar power system surrounded by an active asteroid retrieval mission. A NASA-sponsored study on space manufacturing held at Ames Research Center provided much of the technical basis for the painting.Image Credit: NASA/Denise Watt

Within NASA’s new FY2014 budget proposal lies a project known as the […]