Shall nasa be able to reposition an asteroid

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Summary: NASA has recently announced its intention to capture an asteroid and re-position it close to moon, to be used as space station. However several conditions need to be taken into consideration to accomplish the task and hence it may really not be possible for NASA to meet its stated objectives.
Author: Dr Mahesh C. Jain is a practicing medical doctor has written the book “Encounter of Science with Philosophy – A synthetic view”. The book begins with first chapter devoted to scientifically valid concept of God and then explains cosmic phenomena right from origin of nature and universe up to origin of life and evolution of man. The book includes several chapters devoted to auxiliary concepts and social sciences as corollaries to the concept of God. This is the only book that deals with origin of nature and universe from null (Zero or nothing). This article is in line with author’s understanding of nature.
Visit: http//www.sciencengod.com
http://curatio.in

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Shall nasa be able to reposition an asteroid

  1. 1. Shall NASA be Able to Re-position anAsteroid?Summary: NASA has recently announced its intention to capture an asteroid andre-position it close to moon, to be used as space station. However severalconditions need to be taken into consideration to accomplish the task and hence itmay really not be possible for NASA to meet its stated objectives.American space agency has recently announced its intention to re-position anasteroid close to moon in an orbit and use it as a space station. NASA has claimedthat it has all the technology to accomplish the task. It is expected to serve as aproving ground for hardware and crews en route to larger objects deeper intospace.In April, the Keck Institute for Space Studies at the California Institute ofTechnology reported its conclusion that a 5, 00,000-kg (1.1-million-lb.) near-Earthasteroid (NEA) could be discovered, tracked, captured and delivered to cislunarspace by 2025 at a cost of about $2.65 billion.Keck concluded that placing a 500-ton asteroid in high lunar orbit could provide aunique, meaningful and affordable destination for astronaut crews in the nextdecade. This disruptive capability would have a positive impact on a wide range ofspace exploration interests, which includes developing technology to deflect anasteroid on its way to a disastrous collision with Earth’s atmosphere.Astronomers on the Keck team estimated that a “low-cost, ground basedobservation campaign” could identify five or so candidate targets per year in thedesired 7-meter-dia. Range.A spacecraft generating power with large circular “Mickey Mouse” solar arrayswould use Xenon-based 10-kw Hall thrusters to spiral out to the desired NEA –firing four at a time, each with a specific impulse of 3,000 sec. As it approachesthe target, it would use on board instruments to characterize its shape androtation, and apply algorithms developed by the Defense Advanced ResearchAgency to match its spin. Then it would essentially lasso the NEA with a 15-meter
  2. 2. dia. “capture bag” that would be clinched tight over the spinning space rock, oncethe spacecraft and asteroid are tightly secured together, the spacecraft wouldthen de-tumble the combination. The Keck study experts calculate that it wouldtake 300 kg of propellant to stabilize the asteroid.After that, the spacecraft could use its solar-electric propulsion to work its wayinto a high lunar orbit or even one of the Earth- Moon Lagrangian points thatNASA is studying as way stations that avoid fuel-consuming gravity wells en routeto destinations beyond low Earth orbit.It is well known that all celestial bodies maintain precise elliptical orbits. A circularorbit can easily be understood on the basis of balance of gravitational force ofattraction and centrifugal force but elliptical orbits that are precisely maintainedover an immense period of time can’t be thus explained. No doubt, Kepler’s lawsof planetary motion have sufficient room for elliptical orbits but they only definethe conditions that are met and not the mechanisms utilized to meet theconditions. It is implicit even in ‘Kepler’s equal area law’ that elliptical orbitrequires mathematically-precise maintenance. There is really no room for acelestial body to wander about its elliptical path. Elliptical orbits, for example,involve precise movement of Earth towards Sun during part of its journey andprecise movement of Earth away from Sun during another part of its journey. Notonly this, it also involves precise conservation of total energy of a celestial body allthe time. Therefore elliptical movement of celestial bodies is quite unlike thependulum movement which involves total inter-conversion of kinetic energy intopotential energy and vice versa. Elliptical orbits of celestial bodies involvemathematically precise partial inter-conversion of kinetic energy and potentialenergy. We just don’t know as to how celestial bodies conserve their energy,maintain precise elliptical paths, precisely regulate inter-conversion of kineticenergy into potential energy and vice versa; and precisely move towards or awayfrom their Sun.Re-0positioning an asteroid into a new orbit demands precise understanding ofthese considerations so that appropriate technology can be developed to meetabove stated considerations. However, since astronomers/physicists have never
  3. 3. posed these questions to themselves, therefore there can’t be any solutions tothese questions either.Hence, NASA may have the technology to be able to discover, track, capture anddeliver an asteroid to cislunar space but it is unlikely to have technology to keep itin cislunar space along a precise mathematically predictable elliptical orbit. Thismust be true and correct at the present level of understanding and technologydevelopment.Therefore NASA with all its resources is unlikely to be able to re-position anasteroid into a new home. Yet this technology may be useful to deflect anasteroid on its way to a disastrous collision with Earth’s atmosphere.Author: Dr Mahesh C. Jain is a practicing medical doctor has written the book“Encounter of Science with Philosophy – A synthetic view”. The book begins withfirst chapter devoted to scientifically valid concept of God and then explainscosmic phenomena right from origin of nature and universe up to origin of lifeand evolution of man. The book includes several chapters devoted to auxiliaryconcepts and social sciences as corollaries to the concept of God. This is the onlybook that deals with origin of nature and universe from null (Zero or nothing).This article is in line with author’s understanding of nature.Visit: http//www.sciencengod.com http://curatio.in

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