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NEA-Scout [NASA]

NEA-Scout (Near Earth Asteroid Scout) is a cubesat mission by the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center to perform a slow flyby and rendezvous maneuver with a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) and characterize it in a way that is relevant to human exploration.

This mission is based on the JPL Deep Space NanoSat 6U cubesat Bus and features an 80 m2 solar sail. The payload will consist of a COTS 4-band spectrometer.

NEA-Scout will perform several lunar fly-bys before beginning the cruise phase to the asteroid. The maximun earth distance will be about ~0.35 AU and the solar distance will be about ~0.9-1.1 AU. NEA-Scout is to perform at least one close, slow flyby (<10 m/s).

NEA-Scout is one of 13 cubesats planned to be carried with the Orion EM1 mission into a heliocentric orbit in cis-lunar space on the maiden flight of the SLS (Block 1) iCPS launch vehicle in 2019.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Asteroid fly-by
Operator: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Contractors: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Configuration: CubeSat (6U)
Propulsion: Solar sail
Power: 4 deployable solar arrays, batteries
Lifetime: 2.5 years
Mass: ~12 kg
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
NEA-Scout - 2019 CCK LC-39B SLS (Block 1) iCPS with Orion EM1, BioSentinel, CuSP, LunaH-Map, Lunar-Flashlight, Lunar-IceCube, SkyFire, EQUULEUS, OMOTENASHI, ArgoMoon, Cislunar Explorer A, Cislunar Explorer B, CU-E3, Miles