NASA wants to find an asteroid, capture it, bring it towards us and send it into an orbit around our Moon. This isn’t a plot for a new Hollywood Blockbuster starring Bruce Willis, this is an idea that NASA is seeking funding for. It is hoped that this venture will advance the knowledge of asteroids, and give us ways to defend Earth from asteroid crashes.
Illustration of how NASA could capture an asteroid(image credit: NASA)
What is an asteroid would be the first question! Well, an asteroid is described as a minor planet orbiting the Sun. However, unlike the planets, asteroids are typically smaller. The largest known asteroid is Ceres which is 580 miles (930km) in diameter. The majority of the asteroids in the solar system are found in the “asteroid belt” which is located between Mars and Jupiter. Our understanding of asteroids has been derived from three main sources: Earth-based remote sensing, data from the Galileo probe flybys, and laboratory analysis of meteorites.
Photo of asteroid Ida and its moon Dactyl taken from the Galileo spacecraft(image credit: NASA)
Many bodies have struck Earth and the Moon in the past, and this is evident ...