|Name||APEX (Asteroid Prospection Explorer)|
|Units or mass||6U|
|Organisation||ESA (European Space Agency)|
|Entity||Government (Civil / Military)|
|Manufacturer||AIVT by Kuva Space|
|Partners||Helsinki University, The Czech Academy of Sciences, Swedish Institute of Space Physics|
Operate as a mineral prospector in deep space.
Operate as a mineral prospector in deep space, surveying the make-up of its target asteroids down to individual boulders, helping prepare the way for future mining missions. It will carry a spectral imager, a secondary ion mass analyser and a magnetometer.
Our Asteroid Spectral Imager will perform detailed spectral measurements of both asteroids on a global basis. It will record the sunlight reflected by Didymos and break down its various colours to look for distinctive absorption ‘fingerprints’, to help map the surface makeup. We’ll obtain a full spectrum for each pixel we see, to make comparisons with terrestrial meteorite samples.”
Another instrument, the Secondary Ion Mass Analyser, will gather data from the constant interaction of the asteroid surfaces with the solar wind from the Sun. A dedicated navigation camera would help enable the precision flying required by these various mission phases, culminating in an asteroid touchdown.
|Keywords||Beyond Earth orbit, Propulsion, Asteroid prospecting|
Last modified: 2023-06-08
Detailed APEX (Asteroid Prospection Explorer) entry in the Database
Full Nanosats Database (much more data)