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Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 17:21 EDT

NASA Administrator Talks Asteroids During Visit At JPL

May 24, 2013
Image Caption: NASA Administrator Charles F. Bolden (front center) discusses the Asteroid Initiative at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., on May 23, 2013, in one of the laboratories where engineers are testing and developing advanced spacecraft engine technology. The Asteroid Initiative is a proposal to robotically capture a small near-Earth asteroid and redirect it safely to a stable orbit in the Earth-moon system where astronauts can visit and explore it. Behind Bolden, from left to right, are JPLers Brian Muirhead, chief engineer; Firouz Naderi, director of the solar system exploration directorate; John Brophy, electric propulsion engineer; Don Yeomans, manager of the Near-Earth Object Program Office; and Paul Chodas, a scientist with the NEO office. The small circular object just to the right of Muirhead is a model of an ion engine similar to what is being developed for the Asteroid Initiative. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden met with members of the asteroid initiative team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., today.

Later, Bolden and some team members spoke with media inside a JPL lab where advanced technology propulsion systems are built and tested, like the type that will be used for the asteroid initiative. JPL and NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland are developing the ion thruster jointly.

The initiative is a proposal to robotically capture a small near-Earth asteroid and redirect it safely to a stable orbit in the Earth-moon system, where astronauts can visit in person and explore it.

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Source: NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory