Science Seminars

Lucy – the First to the Trojans

Speaker: Hal Levison (SWRI)
Date: Thursday, Sep 23, 2021
Time: 4:00 PM
Location: Zoom

Seminar Abstract:

I will discuss NASA’s Lucy mission. Lucy, selected as part of NASA’s Discovery Program, is the first reconnaissance of the Jupiter Trojans, objects that hold vital clues to deciphering the history of the Solar System. Due to an unusual and fortuitous orbital configuration, Lucy, will perform a comprehensive investigation that visits six of these primitive bodies, covering both the L4 and L5 swarms, all the known taxonomic types, the largest remnant of a catastrophic collision, and a nearly equal mass binary. It will use a suite of high-heritage remote sensing instruments to map geologic, surface color and composition, thermal and other physical properties of its targets at close range. Lucy, like the human fossil for which it is named, will revolutionize the understanding of our origins. Lucy will launch during a 23 day launch period that starts on Oct. 16, 2021.