According to Politico, Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., has revealed that NASA is planning to have a robotic spaceship catch a small asteroid and park it near the moon so that astronauts could explore it.
"It really is a clever concept," Nelson said in a press conference in Orlando. "Go find your ideal candidate for an asteroid. Go get it robotically and bring it back."
While there are thousands of asteroids that size out there, finding the right one that comes by Earth at just the right time to be captured will not be easy, said Donald Yeomans, who heads NASA's Near Earth Object program that monitors close-by asteroids. He said once a suitable rock is found it would be captured with the space equivalent of "a baggie with a drawstring. You bag it. You attach the solar propulsion module to de-spin it and bring it back to where you want it."
|A Closer Look at the Apollo 17 Landing Site|
|The Universe is Dying|
|Firefly: Low-Cost Satellite Launch to Low Earth Orbit|
|Deep Space Industries to Land on Asteroid by 2020|
|"Mars colonisation as extinction insurance."|
|A Really Fast Electric Skateboard|
|“That's how different these results are becoming.”|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|“How to build a house.”|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|Humans Need Not Apply|
|“Wouldn't it be nice if you were rewarded for all of the little good things you do.”|
|When the Wrong Hastag Can Get You Killed by an Assassination Drone|
|“For the first time in the world, AI will run in an election.”|
|“Instead of consuming fossil fuels, it would then feed surplus electricity into the grid.”|
|Amateur-Built Electric Car Going After Record Set by Tesla|