asteroid

Could comet clusters, or something other-worldly, explain this cosmic flicker?

Could comet clusters, or something other-worldly, explain this cosmic flicker?

January 10, 2017 

With more than 100 billion stars in the Milky Way galaxy, there are plenty of celestial objects for scientists to survey. Every once in a while, astronomers see something puzzling, prompting explanations that may seem even more out there: planetary collisions, comet clusters or even aliens.

To Lasso an Asteroid

Officially, it’s called the Asteroid Initiative.

The plan was incented by President Barack Obama's call for NASA to send a manned mission to a near-Earth asteroid by 2025, and then aim for flight to Mars in the 2030s.

NASA's initiative offered a number of advantages. It was new and novel; no human had visited an asteroid before. And with very little gravity, the project didn’t require expensive landers and ascent vehicles.