The NEAR spacecraft

Jessica Edmonds and Emily Peters

NASA Summer Interns, Northwestern University

Who we are and what we do: We're participants in NASA's summer research program for high school and college students at Northwestern University. We work for Mark Robinson , a planetary geologist, and we also do work for Ann Harch, at Cornell University. More specifically, we're working on the NEAR (Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous) project. On February 14, 2000, the NEAR spacecraft will go into a 200 kilometer orbit around the asteroid 433 Eros, and gradually work its way down into a 100 km, and then a 50 km, orbit. Our job is to determine when to take pictures with the MSI (Multi-Spectral Imager) in the 100 km orbit so that we get as complete a view as possible of the asteroid.

Why it's difficult to take pictures of Eros: Eros has a funny shape, a funny rotation, and we don't know a whole lot about it.

An overview of what we did: These are the talks that we gave at the end of the summer to the other participants in the summer research program. They provide a good summary of what we've done, but they also repeat some things that are on the rest of the page.

Progress Reports: These detail some of the specific questions we answered over the course of the summer.
Some fun stuff: