NASA seeks robotic spacecraft for asteroids, Mars

WHAT: In support of a mash up of sci-fi dreams – the Armageddon-redirect of a deadly asteroid and the colonization of Mars – NASA is seeking robotic spacecraft concepts from the private sector.

WHY: In the mid-2020s, NASA plans to land a robotic spacecraft on a near-Earth asteroid, capture a boulder from the asteroid and guide it into orbit around the moon for study as part of the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM).

Technologies involved include dexterous robotic systems and advanced Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP); both technologies could play key roles in the future redirection of Earth-bound asteroids and the colonization of Mars.

NASA issued a request for information seeking concepts from industry in support of the mission.

The ARM will test a variety of techniques and technologies that could spur future human exploration of the solar system.

The agency is also exploring the "Restore-L" mission concept, in which a spacecraft would use dexterous robotic systems to grapple and refuel a government satellite in low-Earth orbit – a mission that could benefit from ARM-tested technologies and which could have ready commercial potential.

Responses are due June 29. NASA will host a teleconference May 22 to answer questions and provide additional information about the RFI.

Posted by Zach Noble on May 20, 2015 at 9:28 AM


Featured

  • Defense
    Soldiers from the Old Guard test the second iteration of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) capability set during an exercise at Fort Belvoir, VA in Fall 2019. Photo by Courtney Bacon

    IVAS and the future of defense acquisition

    The Army’s Integrated Visual Augmentation System has been in the works for years, but the potentially multibillion deal could mark a paradigm shift in how the Defense Department buys and leverages technology.

  • Cybersecurity
    Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas  (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Lora Ratliff)

    Mayorkas announces cyber 'sprints' on ransomware, ICS, workforce

    The Homeland Security secretary announced a series of focused efforts to address issues around ransomware, critical infrastructure and the agency's workforce that will all be launched in the coming weeks.

Stay Connected