The spacecraft Lucy : Trojan flew towards the asteroid

The spacecraft Lucy

Lucy is NASA’s new spacecraft. It flew from the earth on October 16. Its target is eight asteroids. One of them is located in the asteroid belt of the solar system. The other seven are Jupiter’s Trojans. This campaign will continue for 12 years. The location of the asteroid belt is between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.

History The spacecraft Lucy: Naming and Mission


They are all spinning with the sun at the center. But Lucy will fly past only one asteroid in the region. 52247 Donald Johansson. It is named after the American paleontologist Donald Johansson. Lucy’s launch from Cape Canaveral.

There is a long preparation behind each space mission. NASA selected the concept of Lucy spacecraft on September 30, 2015. In 2016, it was selected as the 13th ‘Discovery Class Mission’. That’s the beginning. In four episodes, the spacecraft has been gradually built in several steps. Then, on October 16, it was launched from Cape Canaveral.

next destination of lucy’s is Jupiter’s seven Trojan asteroids. What is a ‘Trojan’? The real name of the Battle of Trojan is the Trojan War. The Greeks used the Trojan horse in that war.

The asteroids in this region orbit Jupiter and orbit the Sun. There are more than 9,600 asteroids here. But Lucy will only fly past seven. The purpose is to collect information on fossils or fossils that form planets in the solar system.

That’s why Lucy was named. Hundreds of bones of a hominin woman were found in Ethiopia, Africa, in 1984. These fossils are quite important in biology. Its discoverer was paleontologist Donald Johansson. That’s why the spacecraft is named Lucy.

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What will Lucy do

Scientists believe that Trojan asteroids are made up of excess material that formed during the formation of the planets in the early part of the solar system. I mean, there are signs of that time in it, just like there are in fossils. This means that it is possible to know more accurately by researching these asteroids.

The spacecraft is about forty-six feet long, with only its solar cells covering about 24 feet. This will be the main task of empowering Lucy in this twelve year campaign. And, there are various types of scientific instruments to collect the necessary information.

One will find the absorption spectrum of different substances, ice, silicate, etc. on the surface of the asteroid, the other will create a detailed map. Which will measure their thermal inertia etc. The absorption spectrum can be called the handprint of the element.

Another sign that can be identified by looking at the name of the element. Thermal inertia, the rate at which an asteroid retains heat and the rate at which it radiates, etc., determine the planet’s internal structure.

The duration of the mission


This place contains countless asteroids and millions of other objects of various sizes. There are dwarf planets and there are 11 to 19 million asteroids with a diameter of more than 1 km. 

By 2024, Lucy will be orbiting the earth. It will then use the Earth’s gravity to launch asteroids, approximately December 12, 2024. It will reach 52247 Donald Johansson on April 20, 2025. From there, the first Trojan asteroid will reach 3546 Euribates on August 12, 2027. All the work of this campaign will be completed in March 2033.

The next time is a bonus. As long as Lucy is active, she will orbit various asteroids, collecting information needed for scientific research. Then, when life is over, it will be lost in the crowd of innumerable asteroids, in the vastness of space, which has no end.


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