Getting to Know Asteroids on ADLIVE 2021

Getting to Know Asteroids on ADLIVE 2021

Getting to Know Asteroids on ADLIVE 2021 https://asteroidday-uploads.s3.eu-central-1.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/22191509/08.jpeg 512 341 Asteroid Day Asteroid Day https://asteroidday-uploads.s3.eu-central-1.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/22191509/08.jpeg

Asteroid Eros, as seen by NASA’s NEAR Shoemaker mission. Credit: NASA/JPL/JHUAPL

The first discovery of asteroids in the 1800s, unleashed a flood of curiosity about their composition and their role in the formation of our solar system. In 1995, scientists got the first up-close glimpse of asteroids as the Galileo spacecraft made its way towards Jupiter, further enticing astronomers and planetary scientists alike. But it was on 17 February 1996 that the investigation of the asteroids truly changed forever.

The date was when NASA launched the NEAR-Shoemaker mission to asteroid Eros. This was the first dedicated mission to an asteroid and results from that mission began the modern era of asteroid investigation.

Stereoscopic images of asteroid Ryugu. Credit: Brian May

In this second segment of Asteroid Day LIVE 2021, we will get to know the asteroids better than ever before, as we begin to see them through modern scientific eyes.

We will hear how astronomers classify asteroids and their meteorite counterparts, and our Meet the Asteroid series, produced in association with The Planetary Society, will introduce us to more fascinating mini worlds.

The centrepiece of this segment is a very special recording in which we hear from Asteroid Day’s co-founder and Queen guitarist Brian May about his work with Patrick Michel, Director of Research at CNRS, France, to bring images and computer simulations of asteroids to life using 3D stereoscopic images.

We will also have exclusive updates from the principal investigators of JAXA’s Hayabusa2 mission and NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, both of which have achieved extraordinary success in the last twelve months. OSIRIS-REx succeeded in collecting samples from asteroid Bennu, while Hayabusa2 successfully returned its samples of asteroid Ryugu to Earth for analysis. We’ll be hearing what happens next for these amazing missions.

The Hayabusa2 return capsule containing samples of asteroid Ryugu is recovered. Credit: JAXA.

This segment will culminate in a panel discussion about how we investigate asteroids today, and some of the surprising findings that we have made. Thanks to the various asteroid missions and detailed ground-based campaigns, we now know that they come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, compositions and internal structures. As strange as it sounds, we now know that the weak gravitational field created by an asteroid means that its surface may behave more like a fluid than a solid in certain situations.

How do we get to know an asteroid? Julia de Leon, Planetary Scientist, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias
NEAR-Shoemaker Reflections Andy Cheng, DART Investigation Team Co-lead, APL
What are the different types of asteroids? Julia de Leon, Planetary Scientist, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias
Can you walk on an asteroid? Leland Melvin, Astronaut
Meet Asteroid Bennu with The Planetary Society
Stereoscopic imagery and asteroids Brian May, Astrophysicist, Co-founder Asteroid Day; Patrick Michel, Research Director, CNRS, Côte d’Azur Observatory
A message from Broadcasting Center Europe (BCE) Xavier Thillen, Head of Production & Digital Media Operations, BCE
(Japanese) Hayabusa2 Mission Update
Host: Toshihisa Nikaido, Administrator, JAXA; Makoto Yoshikawa, Project Manager, Hayabusa2 mission
OSIRIS-REx Mission Update Dante Lauretta, Principal Investigator, OSIRIS-REx mission
What can the meteorites tell us about asteroids? Sara Russel, Planetary Scientist, Natural History Museum London
Meet Asteroid Vesta with The Planetary Society
What’s inside an Asteroid Panel Discussion
Host: Lucie Green, Solar Physicist, University College London; Christopher Snead, Advanced Small Particle Processor, Johnson Space Center; Julie Castillo-Rogez, Planetary Geophysicist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory; Naomi Murdoch, Planetary Scientist, ISAE-SUPAERO; Patrick Michel, Research Director, CNRS, Côte d’Azur Observatory
How can I work with asteroids? Leland Melvin, Astronaut