Travel between asteroids? It may be less dangerous than it sounds. (Photo: iStock)
This May 4, NASA does not forget the Star wars day. In his Twitter account he recalled several scenes from the well-known saga and explained what is the probability that the real missions will find scenarios similar to those of the films conceived by George Lucas.
How was Star Wars Day born? We tell you about May 4
Star Wars Day: what could happen
Han Solo’s navigation through the asteroid field
The Space Agency says the odds of getting out safely from this situation are pretty good.
How do you know? NASA has at least three missions that will be in this situation:
Osiris-Rex, a space probe whose objective is to reach the asteroid Bennu, collect a sample of the material from its surface and return to Earth for this sample to be analyzed.
Lucy: the first mission to the Trojan asteroids. Trojans are time capsules since the birth of our Solar System more than 4 billion years ago, the Trojan asteroid swarms associated with Jupiter are believed to be remnants of the primordial material that formed the outer planets.
Lucy will be the first space mission to study the Trojans. The mission takes its name from the fossilized human ancestor (named “Lucy” by its discoverers) whose skeleton provided a unique insight into the evolution of humanity. In addition, the Lucy mission will revolutionize our understanding of planetary origins and the formation of the solar system.
Psyche Mission; it is a trip to a single metal asteroid orbiting the Sun between Mars and Jupiter. What makes the asteroid Psyche unique is that it appears to be the exposed nickel-iron core of a primitive planet, one of the building blocks of our solar system.
During the course of her mission, Lucy will fly alongside seven Jupiter Trojans. This sequential animation shows the movements of the inner planets. (Image: CAS Astronomical Institute / Petr Scheirich / NASA)
What is an asteroid?
Asteroids, sometimes called minor planets, are airless rocky remnants left over from the initial formation of our solar system about 4.6 billion years ago. The current count of known asteroids is 1,079 million.
Most of this ancient space debris can be found orbiting the Sun between Mars and Jupiter within the main asteroid belt.
Asteroids range in size from Vesta, the largest at about 530 kilometers in diameter, to bodies that are less than 10 meters wide. Also, the total mass of all asteroids combined is less than that of Earth’s Moon.
– Aaron, that’s all (@carolinaaron) May 4, 2021
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The stars of Tatooine
“The Skywalkers’ home planet, Tatooine, in Star Wars, orbiting two stars, was not just a movie invention. Thanks to our missions, we can learn more about binary stars ”, explains NASA.
Our Sun has an entourage of planets, moons, and smaller objects to keep it company as it traverses the galaxy.
But, still lonely compared to many of the other stars, who often come in pairs.
These cosmic couples, called binary stars, are very important in astronomy because they can easily reveal things that are much more difficult to learn from the stars that are alone.
Some of them could even host habitable planets.
Lightsabers in space
The Hubble telescope captured this view of a celestial “lightsaber” called HH 24. But, it is not in a galaxy very, very far away, it is in our own Milky Way, at a distance of about 1,350 light years.
In the center of the image, partially obscured by a layer of dark Jedi-like dust, a newborn star shoots two jets into space as a kind of birth announcement for the universe.
This sequence combines two-dimensional zoom and three-dimensional flight to explore the stunning Hubble Space Telescope image of the Herbig-Haro object known as HH 24. (Photo: NASA, ESA, and F. Summers, G. Bacon, Z. Levay, and L. Frattare)
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